Monday, 2 February 2015

Deep Sky column 1/2015: Orion Redux

NGC 1684: Fairly faint elliptical galaxy. Visible as a faint smudge paired with NGC 1682 using 8 inch Orion DSE @ 133x. Brightest galaxy in Orion.

NGC 2194: Beautiful open cluster with 150* within 5'. East of the cluster lies Luginbuhl-Skiff 1 discovered visually by astronomer Brian Skiff in 1975.

Abell 12 (PK 196-6.1): Glued to brilliant 4th magnitude Mu Orionis. Barely visible with 4.5 SkyQuest using an occulting bar. Using larger aperture and an OIII filter a darker center is visible.

Barnard's Loop (Sh 2-276): Massive size of over 25 degrees. Visible with any optical instrument, usually best with small widefield refractors. UHC or H-Beta filter improves contrast. Edward Emerson Barnard called it "Orion Loop".

The original version included: NGC 1662+1663, NGC 1684, NGC 1788, NGC 1999, NGC 2141, NGC 2194, Cederbland 59 and Sh 2-276.