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Nyctimene

Arp 331 galaxy chain

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Was out with the 18" Obsession this morning under hazy 5.0 NELM/21.1 SQM-L skies, prompted by a freshly released German observer's handbook "Beobachteratlas für Kurzentschlossene" to spot this chain of 9 members, close to Mirach. Starting from there, I was greeted by the very obvious and well detached galaxy NGC 404, "Mirach's Ghost". After a short star hop with the 18 mmf/82° Maxvision, giving 114x mag, the brightest member, 383 (12.4 mag), was immediately visible, almost round, with a brighter core region. N of it, the galaxy pair 379 and 380 (12.5/12.7) was obvious. The slightly fainter pair 384/385 to the south was visible directly, when I switched to the 10 mmf Zeiss Ortho. After several minutes, I was able to make out the much fainter 375 (14.3) to the west, with averted vision for about 30% of observing time. The fainter members remained invisible through the haze, but I'm sure, that they all are accessible under 5.5-5.8 skies. A pleasing view with 205x, and a rewarding target, for 12" or even 8" scopes. (Have a look at the Interstellarum Deep Sky Atlas, chart D11). The warm late summer night was enriched by the scent of several nightly fragrant flowers, that I had sowed close by. I don't listen to music, when I'm observing - too much distraction for me. But these little summer greets were a nice addition; and so, after 1 hour of observing, quite content to bed at 04.20 CEST.

Attached a picture (from the net):

piscescloud_5F00_25min_5F00_090116F.jpg

Thanks for reading

Stephan

Edited by Nyctimene
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Great report - some challenging galaxies spotted through the hazy conditions from the sounds of it. Well done for observing at such a late (early!) time. Usually it's quite difficult for me to observe this time of morning unless I simply stay up the night before!

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Excellent report Stephan!

I must now take a look at this area as in the past a quick look at the Ghost was all I did pretty much. Your report has my motivation levels going up and so has the clear skies coming here. I think I'll put the lawn chair away (MW obs) and get a scope out!

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3 hours ago, jetstream said:

I must now take a look at this area as in the past a quick look at the Ghost was all I did pretty much.....

Me too !

Nice report Stephan - my 12 inch dob will be trained on this area when next out under a dark sky :smiley:

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Great report thank yo, will have to visit  and look for myself. One of those areas that we are unaware of until a fellow observer points it out.

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