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Planetary Nebula targets


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Hi all.

I spent quite a bit of time observing the Cats Eye Nebula a few nights ago and really enjoyed it. At x150 it showed a beautiful green ball which reminded me of Uranus. At x240 I also managed to see the central star with averted vision, I was very impressed how well this nebula showed at high power in polluted sky. I am hoping to have another look at it tonight.

I also intended to revisit The Ring Nebula now it is coming back around. I am hoping to that I will be able to find more detail in this target now as I am more experienced than when I viewed it late last Summer.

What recommendations of planetary Nebula do you folks have that would show good detail under the above conditions like the Cats Eye did.

I enjoyed viewing the blue Snowball nebula but that has gone now until next winter.

 

Thanks all.

Baz

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42 minutes ago, ScouseSpaceCadet said:

The Dumbbell Nebula (M27) in Vulpecula.

Ahh yes this is actually on  my hit list this summer! I didn't managed to see it last year when I got started observing.

 

Thanks SSC!

 

14 minutes ago, John said:

A couple of my favourites are the Eskimo Nebula in Gemini and the Blue Snowball in Andromeda.

I am also a big fan of the Blue Snowball. It is one of the few targets that I do actually see the colour blue nice and clearly.

I managed to locate the Eskimo but it was literally for a very short period of before it got to low. These two are both sadly gone from view for me!

Cheers

Baz

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I really enjoyed M57 last night, best at 167x mag and some nice subtle detail in the outer shell. I have never seen colour or central star but it is a great nebula and so easy to find.

I will have to try out the blue snowball, I have never observed this.

I find the owl nebula M97 really dim.

I view the eskimo nebula for the first time a few weeks ago and I teased up some detail but it wasn't easy.

Definitely an area I want more experience in.

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M97 benefits a lot from a UHC or O-III filter. I had some great views of it last night with my 12 inch dobsonian. Filterless, the nearby galaxy M108 was in the same field of view. The UHC and then the O-III filter enhanced the contrast of the nebula but I lost the galaxy. With the O-III I could just make out the "eyes" of the Owl.

The central star of M57 is magnitude 15 so just a bit beyond what I can do from home with my 12 inch. The central star in M27 (the Dumbell) is visible though even with my 120mm refractor. It needs a bit of magnification to tease it out. The Dumbell Nebula seems very large after observing M57 !

These nebulae repay some study at different magnifications and with / without filters. Initial impressions can often be a little "so what ?" but the more you look, the more you see, like so many aspects of astro observing :smiley:

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1 hour ago, Jiggy 67 said:

IC3568 is a nice blue planetary North East of Polaris with a visible central star, well worth a visit 

Is this known by any other name? I've searched Skysafari for IC3568 and it's not finding anything. I'm keen to have a look tonight.

On a slightly different note. Anyone attempting Mercury after sun set? It looks to be in a very high position by its standards.

Baz

 

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1 minute ago, Barry-W-Fenner said:

Is this known by any other name? I've searched Skysafari for IC3568 and it's not finding anything. I'm keen to have a look tonight.

On a slightly different note. Anyone attempting Mercury after sun set? It looks to be in a very high position by its standards.

Baz

 

Yep around the 21st of may I'm gonna go for mercury. The only planet I havent observed with the scope. It is going to be pretty near Venus then and easier to find.

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15 minutes ago, miguel87 said:

Yep around the 21st of may I'm gonna go for mercury. The only planet I havent observed with the scope. It is going to be pretty near Venus then and easier to find.

Thanks for the heads up. I will keep that in mind.

I managed to see it on one occasion late last year but only for a matter of minutes.  I will try to observe it a bit more while it's about!

 

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2 hours ago, Barry-W-Fenner said:

Is this known by any other name? I've searched Skysafari for IC3568 and it's not finding anything. I'm keen to have a look tonight.

On a slightly different note. Anyone attempting Mercury after sun set? It looks to be in a very high position by its standards.

Baz

 

That’s the correct designation, I found it on SkySafari, maybe needs the space between the C and the 3

 

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Edited by Jiggy 67
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1 hour ago, cotterless45 said:

Just a few to keep you busy , what you're after naming is the "lemon slice Nebula" , preferably in gin,Nick.IMG_7715.thumb.JPG.a3210872f3f46bdb699122fe4b8f7202.JPG

Bizarre, considering the Lemon Slice Nebula is blue and round 😀

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Is this blue lemon slice neb something I should be able to see from London skies with my 8” dob? Tried a couple of nights but no joy. I think I’m looking in the right place- pointed scope in roughly right area relative to Polaris and 2bright stars in Urmin, scan around to find distinctive bright double of HR 4892 and 3, pan west to find colourful double of HR 4639 and other, pan east about half way then go a bit north and scan around- nothing. But then in SS it doesn’t show anything there either lol. But it says it’s fairly bright 🤷‍♂️

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389E417C-0642-4A6B-9A29-020BBB864DCD.jpeg

9BA09F1D-DB89-4A2E-A072-10B19E3CC30C.jpeg

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On 21/05/2020 at 12:11, markse68 said:

Is this blue lemon slice neb something I should be able to see from London skies with my 8” dob? Tried a couple of nights but no joy. I think I’m looking in the right place- pointed scope in roughly right area relative to Polaris and 2bright stars in Urmin, scan around to find distinctive bright double of HR 4892 and 3, pan west to find colourful double of HR 4639 and other, pan east about half way then go a bit north and scan around- nothing. But then in SS it doesn’t show anything there either lol. But it says it’s fairly bright 🤷‍♂️

90C80FA3-85A2-4C6A-A00F-02F2ED63FB4D.png

389E417C-0642-4A6B-9A29-020BBB864DCD.jpeg

9BA09F1D-DB89-4A2E-A072-10B19E3CC30C.jpeg

Sorry to hear you’re struggling with this. I live under Bortle 6 (officially but I think it’s more 7 or 8 ) and I could see it reasonably well with my 8 inch newt. I think you should be able to see something...have you got a UHC or O-III filter?...may assist 

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Just now, markse68 said:

Good to know thanks Jiggy. I do have a uhc I could try. It says it’s small- could I mistake it for s faint star with a wa ep do you think?

Easy to mistake small planetary nebs for stars at low power.

One trick is to hold the filter over the top of the eyepiece and move it (the filter) in and out of the view. This should cause the planetary nebule to "blink" on and off which can make it easier to spot. Can be a by fiddly with the filter though.

 

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Talking of blinking, on Nick’s list is the Blinking Planetary which I find quite fun. Look at it with averted vision and you see the nebula, which shows as quite green, then look directly at it and it blinks out, leaving just the central star.

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I observed the Blinking Planetary the other night with my 12 inch dob. It doesn't really blink with that aperture. A smaller aperture gets that effect though.

 

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10 minutes ago, John said:

I observed the Blinking Planetary the other night with my 12 inch dob. It doesn't really blink with that aperture. A smaller aperture gets that effect though.

 

Yes that’s very true John, I think I’ve seen it in both 4” and 8” doing its trick, 12” too bright I guess.

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11 hours ago, Stu said:

Talking of blinking, on Nick’s list is the Blinking Planetary which I find quite fun. Look at it with averted vision and you see the nebula, which shows as quite green, then look directly at it and it blinks out, leaving just the central star.

I found that one- I don’t know why I expected it to but it didn’t blink at me- I was quite disappointedI! I wasn’t doing it right though- didn’t realise you had to use a special technique to get it blinking 🤦‍♂️ next time...

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