Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Observing challenges for season 2017-2018

The observing season has barely ended here in Southern Finland but it is already time to look ahead. I rarely do any visual observing (excluding LVAS Observer's Challenge and my column) any more but when I do, I try to concentrate on more challenging stuff. Here are a few objects I have on my to see list for the upcoming season.

Cygnus A (3C 405)

The famous 15th (visual magnitude 15.1) magnitude elliptical galaxy. One of the strongest radio sources in the sky. Wolfgang Steinicke has reported seeing the galaxy using a 14" telescope @ 450x [1].

Pease 1
Pease 1. Copyright STScI / HST

I'm not a big fan of stellar planetaries and I am especially not a fan of spotting one from a dense star fields of a globular cluster. Still, worth a try as I've never tried to seriously see Pease 1.

PGC 69457

Einstein's Cross. Copyright ESA

Huchra's lens. Another 15th magnitude galaxy at a somewhat low altitude in Pegasus. Seeing the actual Einstein Cross won't be happening with the 10 inch telescope but just seeing the lensing galaxy is still something.

Gyulbudaghian's Nebula (GM 1-29)

Variable nebula in Cepheus. Usually unfortunately faint.

Mayall "C" (C39) & Star B 342

Brightest globular cluster and brightest single star in Triangulum galaxy. With the extra 2 inches in aperture, seeing it will probably be fairly doable.

NGC 1554-5

A classic. Hind's Variable nebula.  Time for a new view.

Several Messier objects...

There are a bunch of Messiers I still do not have a proper sketch of. I will try to do a few of them in the upcoming season.