This evening really pissed me off.

Conditions were pretty good and looked reasonably settled. This was the first night where it felt really cold outside and we were both layered up, doing a very good impression of Dunlop Man and Women. The humidity was low and dew was absent throughout the session. All very nice, but with the Moon up and 91% illuminated, took the shine off the session.  I’m running out of star clusters to observe, so had to resort to finding a few galaxies to look at.  The results weren’t as bad I was expecting.

Session Data

  • Date: 3/12/2014 
  • Time: 18:52 – 22:36 UT
  • Seeing: I Perfectly  Stable,
  • Transparency: III Mostly Clear,
  • Temp: 9.0c,
  • Air Pressure: 994mb,
  • Humidity: 68%,
  • Wind Speed: 8mph.

IC5146, Caldwell 19

In the Altair Astro 250mm, 10mm Delos, 203 X, 21.3′, West is to the 10 O’Clock I stared at this area for about 10 minutes and even with averted vision saw nothing of the nebulosity associated with this cluster. Not Seen. 

NGC7331, Caldwell 30

In the Altair Astro 250mm, 14mm Delos, 145 X, 29.8′, West is to the 9 O’Clock.

The galaxy is oriented just West of N/S. With the Moon up all I could make out was a 3 arc min wide structure with the core slightly offset to the North. After about 15 mins, the  width seemed to grow slightly with AV3, but it was not possible to say by how much, as when I looked to gauge the increase, it shrunk in size again.

Moving to the Altair Astro 250mm, 10mm Delos, 203 X, 21.3′, and consulting the chart, I did try searching for the two bright NGC galaxies to the East. NGC7337 was invisible, but with AV5 I got at hint that NGC7335 might have been seen where indicated.

Kepple & Sanners’ ‘The Night Sky Observers Guide’ for an observation through 12/14 inch scopes reads
‘……Four extremely faint companion galaxies are to the East of NGC7331 and may be glimpsed with averted vision under good skies’

Whether this is wishful thinking I don’t know. After all it’s 15th mag and and a full Moon.

NGC1976, M42

WOW and even better through the UHC filter. But I didn’t want to dwell on M42 as I wanted to crack on with my Caldwell list.  ….and besides, I would like to observe M42 properly and over a whole session to write up some proper and detailed observing notes.

NGC2419, Caldwell 25

In the Altair Astro 250mm, 10mm Delos, 203 X, 21.3′, West is to the 10 O’Clock.

Using the two guide stars of 7.8 and 7.0 mag to the West. the location of NGC2419 was nailed. Like the previous observation of NGC7331, AV5 provided a hint that something might be there, but conditions by now had deteriorated to V Poor. In all fairness I’ve marked this object as a Not Seen