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"The Eyes", at last

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With excellent transparency and U Maj high in the sky, I had another look at M97 (The Owl nebula) last night, using my 180 Mak with a 2" 38mm Panavision EP. For the first time, I could just make out "the eyes" of the owl - normally for me it is a nearly formless blob with no detail visible. A tribute to the conditions, and the fact that U Maj was well away from the north, as I have a lot of LP (streetlamps + gigawatt security lights) to the north of me.

Nearby M108 was as beautiful as ever, with a lot of granular detail visible along the core - some of which was twinkling like resolved stars in a glob.

Then across the sky and on to Markarian's Chain; the conditions made finding M84 and M86 easier, and with the near perfect conditions, the whole sequence was visible, even less bright galaxies I don't think I've spotted before. Who says Maks aren't deep sky scopes....

Roll on more clear and transparent evenings!


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Nice report Chris.

I found that I needed to use an O-III filter the night before last to allow the position and angle of "the eyes" to be seen with my 12 inch dob. The mak-cass will have excellent contrast so should do well on many DSO's.

M108 becomes very hard to see with the filter in though so it is definitely worth observing this target filterless as well.

We have had some splendid nights lately :smiley:

I wonder if things will go downhill when commuting starts up again in earnest ?

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