Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

sgl_imaging_challenge_banner_30_second_exp_2_winners.thumb.jpg.b5430b40547c40d344fd4493776ab99f.jpg

sungrazer

M57 - Is it a myth?

Recommended Posts

Hi all,

What a wonderful cloudless night it was (my way at least!) last night.  Got the scope out early and did a 3 star alignment on the summer triangle.  Primary objective was M57 (ring neb).  Put my UHC filter in and manually slewed from Vega to β lyrae (side note - Sheliak?  Wasn't this a race of aliens in STTNG??), then half way down to γ.  With my Nexstar 6SE and a Celestron ExCel 25mm EP (60x), both stars were (just) in the FoV.  Hunted for about an hour but couldn't find M57, not a trace!  Took the filter out, which revealed many more stars in FoV, but still no ring.  Went back to Vega and tried auto-slew to it, popped the 9mm in (167x), but still nothing.  :sad:  Gave up just before midnight so it was pretty dark.

Anyone have any advice on resolving M57?  Perhaps 167x wasn't enough (I have no EP shorter, would need to pop my 2x barlow in). I do suffer from moderate LP (Gatwick is a few miles away), but was resolving stars at about the 12th magnitude, M57 should be brighter than that at about 8-9...

Thanks in advance, as always!

SG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hiya,

From the sound of it I'd say that it was light pollution that defeated you. At 60x the ring should have been very obvious. I've seen it at x20 with my binoculars (averted vision) and clearly at x50 with my 24mm MaxVision in the 250PX. My 16mm Maxvision x75 shows it clearly. 

Kev

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's definitely there, I was looking at it with my 10" two days ago. 80x shows it very well for me, I did shove it up to 200x to see what would happen - more contrast and a less clear image was what happened. Maybe there was a bit of thin cloud about, it defeated me a few weeks back when the sky looked clear but wasn't. A filter isn't necessary to see the Ring but it certainly helps. I've just got hold of a Lumicon OIII and it very definitely boosts the contrast.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The ring is pretty small, very much smaller than M27. At 60x  it should be resolved, however. I typically don't use a UHC filter on M57, as it has excellent surface brightness and should be visible even in moderate LP.

  • Like 8

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have just about managed (very much averted vision) M57 with my Tak 60 from Regent's Park in central London.  The transparency was outstanding but obviously the light pollution was substantial.  Used the 5mm setting on my Nagler Zoom for a magnification of 71x.  I find it is pretty distinct with a 4" scope under similar conditions around 60-70x.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

M57 is small and easily overlooked.  It was easy to see in a 6" scope from very light polluted skies - once I had found it. On low powers it looks like a fuzzy star, but x167 is plenty to see it. When you do find it you will find it fairly easily after that.  Sometimes it takes a few nights to track a DSO down for the first time  - don't give up!

Edited by bish
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

M57 is small and easily overlooked.  It was easy to see in a 6" scope from very light polluted skies - once I had found it. On low powers it looks like a fuzzy star, but x167 is plenty to see it. When you do find it you will find it fairly easily after that.  Sometimes it takes a few nights to track a DSO down for the first time  - don't give up!

It wasn't for want of trying, I assure you!  So frustrating to know it's there but just beyond reach for one reason or another.  And, no, I won't give up that easily, heading to the dark site tonight if clear skies present themselves again!  I'm sure Mrs SunGrazer will be baffled by my resolve over such a thing but hey ho!

I'd also agree with some comments about the UHC filter.  It was amazing how much more I could see with it removed.  I think the trick would be to find it first and only then add the filter to enhance contrast?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's a useful star-hop tutorial for M 57 which may help. Hunting DSOs can be tricky at times, especially if you're having to deal with poor transparency and light pollution. I've found that it does require a little practice to become accustomed to the faint whispers of many celestial objects and even then, one's evening may not always be a success. Last night, for example, I was out trying to spot NGC 6790, a planetary nebula in Aquila the gigantic eagle in not perfect conditions and it took a real effort to even think I got a hint of something with the 10". So, just as Bish says, "don't give up" :smiley:.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be honest, I would only use a filter from somewhere light polluted - if you're heading somewhere dark, you'll konw M57 when you see it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

M57 is usually one of the easier to locate and see, which makes what you say a bit odd to me. I was actually stood outside last night with 8x42's looking at the same area to work out if anything were visible, nothing appeared but that was before midnight when the lights around here get switched off.

A 6" should easily pick it out, have seen it in a few 6" scopes from light polluted areas.

Might be a low possibility, did you go down to ß Lyre ?

The 2 stars above could get mistaken and the angle joining them is the same as the 4 stars seem to form a parallelogram. Assumes you moved manually. Just wondering if you were hunting between the 2 correct stars.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sungrazer, like others above all I can advise is keep at it! M57 is there and is a little cutie. I've observed it from my oh-so-not--dark backyard the last two nights and I'm pretty much inner-city. Saw it with my 6" Newt and 90mm Mak (a dimmer view than the 6" admittedly) in 30 and 40mm ep's and then going to 15 and 12mm. I don't know the aperture of your C6, but if my little 90mm can do it so can yours! The map in Robs' link is spot on. A UHC certainly brightens the Ring against the background but I don't use it until after I've found M57.

Once you find it (and you will!) a couple of times, finding it again gets much easier. And you'll fall over your socks when it finally clicks that you're looking at this sweet little thing :)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

M57 is usually one of the easier to locate and see, which makes what you say a bit odd to me. I was actually stood outside last night with 8x42's looking at the same area to work out if anything were visible, nothing appeared but that was before midnight when the lights around here get switched off.

A 6" should easily pick it out, have seen it in a few 6" scopes from light polluted areas.

Might be a low possibility, did you go down to ß Lyre ?

The 2 stars above could get mistaken and the angle joining them is the same as the 4 stars seem to form a parallelogram. Assumes you moved manually. Just wondering if you were hunting between the 2 correct stars.

Ronin, definately the right 2 stars, Sheliak/Sulafat.  I understand what you say about the 2 above, which is why I tried the GOTO after the manual slew attempt.  I could see all 4 with the naked eye last night, even pointed out the fact that they form a nice parallelogram to Mrs SG, who takes a fleeting interest in these things.

I will just have to redouble my efforts tonight, that bottle of pinot noir will have to wait...  :tongue:

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Heh, that Pinot Noir will come in handy once you've found M57 :)

Btw, I find a RACI great for aiming both my scopes to the right place along from Sheliak...as you're GoTo, what finder do you use?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A plain 'ole red dot finder, which i actually find easy to use, if a little tough on the neck/back when pointing at objects near the zenith!  Been looking at the celestron RACIs on FLO, might be my next purchase...  I suspect a telrad may be handy in these situations too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a Rigel which is superb, but with my skies the RACI is invaluable for showing me stars I can't see/hardly see naked-eye ( most of the time this includes Sheliak), plus of course, little or no yoga-poses! No bendy-bunny, me :)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's definitely there, I was looking at it with my 10" two days ago. 80x shows it very well for me, I did shove it up to 200x to see what would happen - more contrast and a less clear image was what happened. Maybe there was a bit of thin cloud about, it defeated me a few weeks back when the sky looked clear but wasn't. A filter isn't necessary to see the Ring but it certainly helps. I've just got hold of a Lumicon OIII and it very definitely boosts the contrast.

was it 2" and if you dont mind me asking where from :smiley:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Keep at it. I failed the first time I tried too. Now I can get it with my 24mm Maxvision x50 most nights. I am only a few miles away from Glasgow so lots of lp. I do not use a filter at low mag but find a UHC brings out the detail at 120 x. Best of luck tonight. I am sure you will succeed.

Edited by laudropb
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ive seen it a with a 130mm scope (Heritage). I cant remember what magnification i was using as i found it by accident. I would have found it using a 25-30mm EP and then increased the mag up to about a 10-15mm ep.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't give up. I can see it easily from S, London LP in 88mm bin's X 26

Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

was it 2" and if you dont mind me asking where from :smiley:

It was a 1.25", I've figured out that astronomy is cheaper if you use as little glass as possible! I got it from astroshop.eu for 99 Euros, which including shipping came to £78. I'd definitely recommend. I've just checked their website and the 2" are out of stock, but they're taking orders for the next batch arriving in September.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It was a 1.25", I've figured out that astronomy is cheaper if you use as little glass as possible! I got it from astroshop.eu for 99 Euros, which including shipping came to £78. I'd definitely recommend. I've just checked their website and the 2" are out of stock, but they're taking orders for the next batch arriving in September.

seem to have sold out everywere for the last 12 months. thank you though mate. hope sungrazer doesnt mind me asking

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmm... Don't under-estimate how small M57 is. I remember never finding it when I was younger, mostly because I was expecting a big obvious ring. Now I know what it looks like it's a doddle to find - it's a stock object, even with reasonably heavy light pollution. I can even spot it from London with my little 80mm refractor.

Best way to find it - leave off the UHC filter, use your lowest power and get both finder stars in the same field of view (Or as near as damn it). The Ring is pretty much dead-centre between the two. What you're looking for is a fuzzy dot - it's like a defocussed star. Use one of the surrounding field to get the telescope in focus and M57 will be the one that remains fuzzy. Once you've found it, then up the power to try and see the form. Stick with it, it can take a while and some practise to tease out the detail - it should respond well once you've got the UHC filter in, but my advice would be to find it first!

In all it took me 18 years to find it, but we didn't have things like SGL to help us in them days!

Good luck,

Paul

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

M57 is a small but superb object. Don't give up looking for it- it stands out on a good night like a polo mint- wonderful object!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not a chance of a retry at the moment, there appears to be some sort of permanent fluff between me and space... :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think if you were using 60x with the stated eyepiece the field would be about 1 degree? i think the two stars are about two degrees apart so suspect you have looked slightly off the mark. The ring is about one third from Sheliak towards Sulafat, effectively between the former and 640 Lyrae. At 60x the ring should be visible as a fuzzy star of you get Sheliak in the edge of field. Once you find it you'll wonder how you missed it. If you cannot see it, you are almost certainly in the wrong place.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.