January 2018

This month’s report is quite simple:  twenty-two images in total were sent in by two section members.

Mark Beveridge, observing from Thainstone near Inverurie, produced fifteen of these, using a new 200mm Edge f 10.4 HD SC T and a SXR-814 mono camera plus red green and blue filters.

Mark imaged two galaxies in the constellation of Ursa Major;  M101, the Pinwheel galaxy and M82, (also known as the cigar galaxy and Arp 337).  Also in Ursa major are reflection nebula M78 and the Owl planetary nebula (M97).


Mark also imaged galaxies M51, the Whirlpool, in Canes Venatici, M66 in Leo (one of the Leo Triplet of galaxies), M74 in Pisces and NGC2403, also known as Caldwell 7, in Camelopardalis.

NGC 2403

Mark’s next four images are IC 342, a face on spiral galaxy in Camelopardalis, NGC 3190 in Leo (the largest of galaxy group Hickson 44), planetary nebula M76, the Little Dumbbell in Perseus and supernova remnant M1, the Crab Nebula in Taurus.

IC 342, also known as Caldwell 5, is often called the “hidden galaxy”, because it lies near the galactic equator, where intervening dust obscures it somewhat.  This dust makes distance estimates problematic: they range from seven to eleven million light years.  At one point Edwin Hubble thought it to be a member of our local group of galaxies;  later studies proved it to be a member of another galaxy group close to our own.

IC 342
NGC 3190

Finally, Mark imaged IC 434, the Horsehead emission/dark nebula in Orion, and NGC 7662, the Blue Snowball planetary nebula in Andromeda – with a cropped, detailed version of the latter also.

IC 434
NGC 7662
NGC 7662 detail


Steve Norrie, observing from Fife, also imaged the Horsehead nebula in Orion, on two occasions:

IC 434
IC 434

Steve also made two images of IC443, the Jellyfish emission nebula in the constellation of Gemini.

IC 443
IC 443

Steve’s next two images are also emission nebulae;  IC 410, the Tadpoles nebula in Auriga, and NGC 2244, the Rosette nebula in Monoceros.

NGC 1893, an open cluster of hot stars as young as four million years within IC 410, is sculpting the nebula with powerful stellar winds and ultra violet radiation.  The tadpole shapes in the nebulosity, just below and right of centre in this image, are thought to be sites of ongoing star birth.  This nebula is around 12,000 light years from the Earth, and the “tadpoles” are about ten light years long.

IC 410
NGC 2244

Steve’s final image is the Pinwheel galaxy, M33, in the constellation of Triangulum.



Steve used an Explore Scientific 127mm f7.5 APO refractor and a Starlight Xpress Trius 694 mono camera plus RGB and narrow band filters for all of the images except M33, for which he used a 90mm EDR and an Atik 490C one shot colour camera.  Steve often combines the narrow band data to produce the well – known Hubble Palette colouration.


Dave Finnigan