5/13/2013 Messier Observations

The night started out fairly spotted with clouds. I checked my handy phone app, “Astro Panel”. It said it was supposed to be a good night for observing with good transparency, seeing, humidity, and no cloud cover. So I trusted the app, and waited for a bit. I started to notice the clouds were dispersing so I set up my scope and got ready to start observing.

M4:

12:00 AM
A great night for observing. Near perfect skies. It appeared as a faint fuzzy, but with averted vision I was able to make out individual stars in the cluster. Used goto, but it was a bit off so I had to manually sync. 17 mm eyepiece was best.

sketch of M4:
M4

M27:

12:15 AM
Found using goto. It appeared as a faint, but very visible cloud. Was not able to make out individual stars in the cluster, but it was beautiful nonetheless. Best eyepiece was 17 mm.

sketch of M27:
M27

M56:

12:25 AM
Used goto to find. Almost invisible. It appeared as a very faint fuzzy about half the size of many Messier objects in my 17 mm lens. Best view was given by the 13 mm.

sketch of M56:
M56

M57:

12:40 AM
Used goto. This one messed with my vision a lot. It appeared as an out of focus star. Very tedius to observe when your eyes keep trying to focus on it, but can’t. Used 9 mm eyepiece, as it seemed like the higher power didn’t really affect its brightness.

sketch of M57:
M57

M62:

12:50 AM
Used goto. It appeared as a faint fuzzy in the 17 mm. Switched to 13 mm, and the view improved without much light loss. Fairly bright at the center. The center was nearly as bright as any of the surrounding stars.

sketch of M62:
M62

M19:

1:02 AM
Found with goto. 13 mm gave the best view. It appeared as a fuzzy cloud. The center wasn’t as bright as M62. The light seemed more evenly dispersed. Almost invisible in larger eyepieces.

sketch of M19:
M19

M80:

1:12 AM
Found using goto. It appeared very faint, and almost invisible in the 17 mm. 13 mm eyepiece gave the best view. It was noticeably bright at the center, but the brightness faded rather quickly at the edges.

sketch of M80:
M80

M6:

1:20 AM
Very visible open cluster. Fit perfectly in 9 mm eyepiece, which allowed enough magnification to see many stars.

sketch of M6:
M6

M7:

1:38 AM
A major lighting system must have turned on nearby, because there was a hugely noticeable difference in the brightness of the sky. I could almost not even find any stars at all anymore in the eyepiece. It took a long time to my eyes to readjust enough to be able to sketch this one.

sketch of M7:
M7

M20:

2:00 AM
Stars very visible, but no dust clouds. Only very, very faint noticeable light where the nebulae are. 17 mm eyepiece worked best. The sketch shows dust clouds, or nebulae, but they were honestly too faint to sketch correctly, and almost invisible.

sketch of M20:
M20

M21:

2:15 AM
Barely visible, clouds started rolling in and was just getting done with the sketch in the nick of time. Clouds put an end to the night. This Messier object is located right next to another (M20), and is easy to get the two mixed up when new to observing them. Sketched with the 13 mm eyepiece though the 9 mm gave a better view, the stars were quite dim and hard to focus in the 9 mm.

sketch of M21:
M21

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