August 2015

A busier month for Deep Sky section, with more hours of astronomical darkness prompting five section members to send in their observations.

Dale Holt made five drawings.  NGC 6327 (slightly left and below centre) plus NGC6 329 upper right) and a third faint galaxy (far left).  NGC6327 is magnitude 15 and is in the constellation of Hercules.

NGC 6327

PGC 59984 is a galaxy close to globular cluster M92, also in Hercules.

PGC 59984

Dale’s next sketch is NGC 7006, a globular cluster in Delphinus.  Also known as Caldwell 42, this globular is about 135,000 light years from the Earth. In this sketch there are a number of faint galaxies too.

NGC 7006

Next is a sketch of NGC 7033 and NGC 7034, a pair of elliptical galaxies in the constellation of Pegasus.

NGC 7033, NGC 7034



Dale’s fifth sketch is NGC 7036, also in the constellation of Pegasus. This is an open cluster of stars, about 3,300 light years from the Earth. Again, a number of much more distant background galaxies appear in this sketch.

NGC 7036

Dale used his 505mm f 3.5 Newtonian telescope with a cooled Watec120N video camera, drawing the live images as they appeared on the monitor screen.


Ian Papworth sent in a selection of images of M27, the “dumbbell” planetary nebula in the constellation of Vulpecula.  The first two are a monochrome image plus its negative version, highlighting the faint outer structure.




The next images, show M27 imaged through a selection of filters: Hydrogen alpha,  OIII,  H alpha combined with OIII, and RGB.

M27 H alpha
M27 H alpha plus OIII

Ian also imaged M15, a globular cluster in the constellation of Pegasus, and M76 the “little dumbbell” planetary nebula in Perseus.  M15 is about 33,600 light years from the Earth, and is one of the most ancient globulars at 12 billion years old.  It is one of the most densely packed globular clusters, having experienced what is called “core collapse” such that half of its total mass is in a region of about one light year across at the centre, possibly surrounding a black hole.



Ian used a Celestron 6SE f6.3 Schmidt Cassegrain telescope with a ZWO ASI 120MM camera plus filter wheel.

 Mike Wood sent in four drawings to the section this month, all of deep sky objects in the constellation of Aquila.  The first two are NGC 6755, an open cluster and NGC 6778, a planetary nebula. Mike used a Celestron 9.25 SCT;  the magnification employed is shown on each sketch.


NGC 6755
NGC 6778

The next two drawings are both of planetary nebulae, NGC 6871 and NGC 6804.

NGC 6781
NGC 6804

Toby Papworth observed and sketched M27, the “dumbbell”   planetary nebula.  Toby uses a 3″ Celestron Newtonian telescope.


This was the first planetary nebula that Charles Messier discovered, in 1764.  With a visual magnitude of 7.3 and an angular size of 8 x 5 minutes of arc it is easily found in binoculars and small telescopes, and is a perennial favourite of amateur astronomers.  An OIII filter is helpful for visual observers.


Graham Taylor sent in three images, the two below taken via the Bradford remote telescope.  NGC 4565 is an edge – on spiral galaxy in the constellation of Coma Berenices.  At the top left of this image is another galaxy, NGC 4562.

NGC 4565

NGC 185, also known as Caldwell 18, is a dwarf spheroidal galaxy in the constellation of Cassiopeia.  This galaxy has an active nucleus and is the only known Seyfert galaxy in our local group.

NGC 185

Graham’s final image was taken via a different remote telescope at the Micro Observatory Arizona, which goes by the name of “Donald”;  one of several 6″ reflecting telescopes at this site.  This of course is M81, also known as Bode’s galaxy, in the constellation of Ursa Major.  This galaxy too has an active nucleus, and is the largest of a group of galaxies about 12 million light years from the Earth.


Dave Finnigan