November 2015

During November, two section members submitted their observations.

Mark Beveridge, from Aberdeen, used an Orion Optics OMC 140mm f14 Maksutov-Cassegrain telescope and a Starlight Xpress SXVR-H814 mono camera and RGB filters to capture all of the images below. (*there is one exception where a one-shot colour camera was used).  Due to technical problems, the telescope was unguided.

The first four images are M76, the “little dumbbell” planetary nebula in the constellation of Perseus, M82 “the cigar” starburst galaxy in Ursa Major, NGC 6643 galaxy in Draco (in black and white) and the NGC 6643 galaxy again in colour ( *but taken with a H9C one-shot colour camera).  This magnitude 12.1 galaxy is about 80 million light years from the Earth and its diameter has been estimated at about 86,000 light years.

NGC 6643
NGC 6643

Mark’s next four images are NGC 7331, a spiral galaxy in the constellation of Pegasus, M27, the Dumbbell planetary nebula in Vulpecula, NGC 2300, an 11th magnitude lenticular galaxy in Cepheus (N.B. spiral galaxy NGC 2276 is also in this image, to the right) and NGC 6543, the Cat’s Eye planetary nebula in Draco.

NGC 7331
NGC 2300
NGC 6543

Mark’s images continue with NGC 6946, the Fireworks galaxy in the constellation of Cepheus, spiral galaxy IC 356 in Camelopardalis, IC 5070 the Pelican emission nebula in Cygnus and globular cluster M92 in Hercules.

NGC 6946
IC 356
IC 5070


Mark’s final images are:  M110, companion galaxy to M31 in the constellation of Andromeda, NGC 6643 galaxy in Draco, and the group of galaxies known as Stephan’s Quintet, in Pegasus.

Discovered by French astronomer Edouard Stephan in 1877, four of the five galaxies are in a physical association which is thought will ultimately see them merging together.  The fifth member, NGC 7320 (the one upper right with respect to the others) is a foreground galaxy much closer to the Earth.

NGC 6643
Stephan’s Quintet


Alan Clitherow of Fife, director of the SPA Planetary Section, sent in the following images of the Veil Nebula (supernova remnant) in the constellation of Cygnus (a colour image and a black and white version).  These are wide angle images, showing the Veil East and West; the part of the nebulosity known as Pickering’s triangle is to the upper right.

Veil Nebula
Veil Nebula (mono)


Dave Finnigan