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John

Revealing the Veil

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A decent night tonight without a moon. Naked eye limit around mag 5 towards the zenith. Milky way visible faintly through Cygnus and the Andromeda Galaxy just about naked eye visible with a little averted vision. Not the best I get here but not too shabby either.

I've been giving my favourite deep sky object, the Veil Nebula, some scrutiny tonight with the help of my 12 inch dobsonian and trusty Lumicon O-III filter. The 21mm Ethos and 31mm Nagler eyepieces show big enough chunks of sky to take in large segments of this complex network of related nebulosity, but not the whole thing of course. To get much out of the Veil Nebula a narrowband (ie: UHC) or even better a line (ie: O-III) filter is required it has to be said.

The main segments of the Eastern and Western Veil and Pickerings Triangular Wisp are bright, extensive and well defined tonight. As my eye becomes more fully dark adapted fainter elements have become visible giving 5 NGC objects in total and a few other bits and pieces too. On an even darker and more transparent night I think I could go deeper still but pulling out what I have of this marvellous object has been very satisfying :icon_biggrin:

I've marked this chart of the Veil Nebula with my definite sightings so far. Yellow ovals are the easy portions, green ovals are objects that took a little more time to tease out. I have also had fleeting glimpses of other ill-defined patches as well but I've just recorded the stuff I'm sure of currently.

My view through the newtonian is inverted with east and west reversed of course. The chart is the normal orientation view that our eyes see. To give an idea of the scale, the chart covers an area about 3.5 degrees by 3.5 degrees. With the 31mm Nagler I can get in the whole of the NCG 6992 / 6995 / IC 1340 segment in the field of view. With the 21mm Ethos it's a touch less.

Veil_big.jpg.bd70bfd3f2c56da95293aab2dd050d80.jpg

This really is such a complex and rich object - you can easily spend a whole session exploring it (I've spent over 2 hours on it myself this evening). Here are some links to articles which help delve deeper into the Veil Nebula:

https://www.skyandtelescope.com/astronomy-blogs/explore-night-bob-king/explore-veil-nebula/

https://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/beyond-the-familiar-veil/

https://www.astronomy-mall.com/Adventures.In.Deep.Space/Dissecting the Veil Nebula.html

 

 

 

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Lovely post, John and great info. The Veil Nebula is also in my top favorites. I was out tonight viewing the Veil as well, but only with a 76mm. NGC 6992 was fine, and NGC 6960 was touch and go with averted vision. Nothing like your own observations and certainly no chance of bagging NGC 6979 etc. 

Also thanks for the links :thumbright:. It's late now, but they'll make a tasty read come breakfast time 😀

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Enjoyable read John and a very useful chart. I was also out last night with the 12" Dob mainly to observe DSOs in Draco. However, I did have a session on the Veil as well using my 20mm Myraid and O-III Castell. Had a fair bit of moisture in the air last night so transparency could have been better but it was an enjoyable session.

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Great report John on one of my favourite targets . Transparency was poor here last night which eventually gave way to fog, could only make out the Eastern Veil....just!   

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17 minutes ago, Mark at Beaufort said:

Enjoyable read John and a very useful chart. I was also out last night with the 12" Dob mainly to observe DSOs in Draco. However, I did have a session on the Veil as well using my 20mm Myraid and O-III Castell. Had a fair bit of moisture in the air last night so transparency could have been better but it was an enjoyable session.

Glad you got some observing in too Mark.

I found the transparency reasonably good here until about 1:00 am when a bank of fog rolled up the River Severn and suddenly all I could see were the brightest stars then a few minutes later, nothing. 

@jock1958: perhaps you were getting some of the foggy stuff a bit earlier than I did ?

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Thanks for all this great info John!  I just printed out that great chart from Exploring the Veil and am headed out to do just that.  It's perfectly clear here tonight after a particularly cloudy summer, and spending some extended time surfing through the veil sounds perfect.

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Hope you had some good views Alex :icon_biggrin:

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Great post John, thanks for the chart and info, really useful. One of my favourites too, but not one I get to see very often. I caught it the other night from home in the 8" but only the Eastern and Western parts, Pickerings was hinted at but only that. I couldn't pick up the split in the Witch's Broom but did see the two hooks on the Eastern Veil. Have seen much better at darker sites of course.

One confusion I have is that my NELM at best is about what yours was last night ie Mag 5, yet I rarely, if ever see even hints of the Milky Way from here. I wonder if it is poorer transparency caused by general city pollution and contrails?

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Posted (edited)
On 26/08/2019 at 09:17, John said:

I've been giving my favourite deep sky object, the Veil Nebula, some scrutiny tonight with the help of my 12 inch dobsonian and trusty Lumicon O-III filter.

In a few weeks time the Veil will be clear of our trees and I'm eagerly looking forward to my first view of it with my 12 inch Dob. I only have an Astronomik UHC filter and am wondering if I should get the 0-III for the best results, or do you think I should get decent enough views with the UHC?

Unfortunately the Veil will be very low on my northern horizon so seeing won't be great but I  still think I should be able to see the brighter parts.

Edited by Geoff Barnes
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Thanks John,

It was a good night here last night too.

Having not been out in the UK for a while, we did stick to the favourites.

The last time I tried the Veil, I failed miserably!

Having read your great report, I'll certainly try again.

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On 27/08/2019 at 10:27, Geoff Barnes said:

In a few weeks time the Veil will be clear of our trees and I'm eagerly looking forward to my first view of it with my 12 inch Dob. I only have an Astronomik UHC filter and am wondering if I should get the 0-III for the best results, or do you think I should get decent enough views with the UHC?

Unfortunately the Veil will be very low on my northern horizon so seeing won't be great but I  still think I should be able to see the brighter parts.

A good O-III filter is more effective on this target but a good UHC will show it. It was a UHC that first showed me the Veil Nebula many moons ago - that was when my main scope was a 100mm ED refractor.

So, yes an  O-III for the best results but worth a go with the UHC in the meantime.

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On 27/08/2019 at 10:25, Stu said:

One confusion I have is that my NELM at best is about what yours was last night ie Mag 5, yet I rarely, if ever see even hints of the Milky Way from here. I wonder if it is poorer transparency caused by general city pollution and contrails?

Sorry that I missed your question Stu.

I don't know the answer to be honest with you. While my NELM is rarely better than 5.5 near the zenith, I do seem to get quite good transparency sometimes and seem to do quite well on deep sky targets that are reasonably high above the horizons. My garden is around 300 feet above sea level, not particularly high bit that might help a bit. We do get contrails but the aircraft are generally still quite high and the trails seem to dissipate quickly.

Bristol is around 12 miles NE of me and Newport and Cardiff around 30 and 40 miles away to the NW. Those cities do put up quite a bit of LP so there is not much point in observing things below around 45 degrees in those directions.

 

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Woohoo! I've been trying for any part of the Veil Nebula since you mentioned it John.

Cloud and the moon have hindered any progress until tonight.

It was a race against time with the moon rising, but I finally caught a ride on The Witch's Broom and managed NGC 6992 too in the 8" with a UHC filter.

Both very, very, faint, but they have given me the impetus to try again on a moonless night!

Thanks John for the inspiration! :)

 

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Dark skies, new moon,OIII filter....not many better views in the night sky while it's about...clear skies.

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Great post mate. 

Not wanting to start a new thread just for my Veil Nebula view tonight, I'll just add to yours:

So this evening, I finally managed to catch a glimpse of the VN...and i mean a GLIMPSE. just barely visible with my XT8 and Sybony UHC filter....If it was an image layer in Photoshop, it would have been set at 2% opacity...it was ridiculously faint from my Bortle 5 site and even despite Cygnus being almost at Zenith and the Milky Way being slightly visible. Man alive, this creature is hard to corner. Still...not complaining, happy I finally saw some of it. And the people who said that it is way too big to fit in the eyepiece view were not kidding. This thing is HUGE. Gonna get an O III filer and try again soon. 

 

Tomorrow night, I'm hunting Neptune!

 

Cheers

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Glad you got at least traces of the Veil with the UHC. An O-III is noticably more effective on this target so, when you can, worth picking one up. The Castell brand is not too expensive and works well I believe.

 

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Another note of thanks for this thread. I read it some weeks ago and downloaded the handy picture, then spent a very enjoyable half hour just wandering about the object with my dob and a 30mm eyepiece with an Oiii filter. Without the filter it's almost invisible, with it the major sections are very easy. 

A real pleasure.

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6 hours ago, Whistlin Bob said:

Another note of thanks for this thread. I read it some weeks ago and downloaded the handy picture, then spent a very enjoyable half hour just wandering about the object with my dob and a 30mm eyepiece with an Oiii filter. Without the filter it's almost invisible, with it the major sections are very easy. 

A real pleasure.

Can i ask what size dob you have mate?

 

Cheers

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Like all your reports, great report!! I photographed this the other night and sort of miss looking at it with the big Dob where it really comes alive. Struggling a bit at the moment and need an operation very soon to to sort me out, nothing life threatening, just old and worn out. Will be pulling up trees by hand after Christmas and pulling that Dob around again.

Alan

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Hope your Op is a success Alan and that you are feeling your old self again soon :smiley:

 

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Frustrating down here. I bought an Astronomik  OIII filter recently purely to have my first view of the Veil.

I only have a small window of opportunity to see it when it emerges from behind our trees and sinks below the horizon.

Its highest elevation is only 20 degrees at about 9pm so a bit lost in the light glow of the city as well.

I've had a couple of goes now with a SW 32mm plossl and the OIII and have to say it has been disappointing. I can see both east and west sections but they are really faint, only just discernable as pale grey smudges, no hint of detail at all.

I will keep trying, I still have a month to see it but time is running out with lighter evenings ahead.

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6 minutes ago, Geoff Barnes said:

Frustrating down here. I bought an Astronomik  OIII filter recently purely to have my first view of the Veil.

I only have a small window of opportunity to see it when it emerges from behind our trees and sinks below the horizon.

Its highest elevation is only 20 degrees at about 9pm so a bit lost in the light glow of the city as well.

I've had a couple of goes now with a SW 32mm plossl and the OIII and have to say it has been disappointing. I can see both east and west sections but they are really faint, only just discernable as pale grey smudges, no hint of detail at all.

I will keep trying, I still have a month to see it but time is running out with lighter evenings ahead.

Tricky Geoff. I guess you are battling atmospheric extinction as well as the LP. The Veil overhead here from a dark site can be amazing, not often we get better views up in the North!

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