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What to look for in the sky mid Sep-Late Nov?

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As it says in the title what are the best things to look at in the sky through an eight inch telescope?

There is an astronomy club starting in our school and just wanted to know what objects to look for (between 7.00-8.30/9 ???) Also very dark skies!



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Mid September, October and through November is an awesome time to view some some well know deep sky showpieces. Start with the double star Albireo in Cygnus. During September it is well placed overhead for mid-northern latitude observers. Very close by in the constellation Vulpecula is the planetary nebula M27, better known as the "Dumbbell Nebula", and don't forget M57, the "Ring Nebula" in Lyra. In October the constellation Andromeda is becoming well placed for viewing M31, the "Great Andromeda Nebula", the closest spiral galaxy to the Milky Way, and also the farthest object in the night sky visible to the naked eye. While your looking at M31 you may notice a couple additional objects in the field of view. Those will be two additional galaxies M32 and M110. Don't forget that the cresent and First Quarter Moon is fascinating to look at too, but use a Moon filter for better contrast. As we get into November the constellation Perseus is becoming well placed and a great target here is the Double Cluster (NGC 884 & NGC 869). A low power, wide field view is best for this object. Under a dark sky away from the light pollution of cities and towns the Double Cluster is visible to the unaided eye. Another cluster of interest here is M34. Although not as appealing as the Double Cluster it still warrants a close look. M34 is about 1,400 light-years distant and conatins about 100 stars.

All of the objects I mentioned are well sutied for an eight telescope. If you don't have a sky atlas I strongly recommend getting one to help you locate these and many, many more fascinating deep sky objects.

Clear Skies!

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