NexStar 50 Club Observation Log

Name: James S. Roberts
NexStar Telescope Model: 8i

Note: All observations made using 2" star diagonal and position descriptions are reversed left/right. All coordinates (either Alt/Az or RA/DEC) were obtained from the Nexstar hand control unit while observing these objects (i.e. using Get Alt/Az or Get RA/DEC). Consequently, they include any alignment error present during the observing session.

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Object: 1 - Orion Nebula… M42 / NGC1976
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: RA 05h 34m 21.7s Dec -04 o 37' 05''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 22:50:34 EST. The nebula was observed with a Meade Super Wide Angle 24.5 mm eyepiece. It looked like a smoky, "molar-shaped" nebula with a longer left "root" that formed a hood to the left of the FOV. The trapezium was near the center of the "molar" near the point where the two "roots" join. The left side was bordered by three stars that formed a straight line that was oriented from the top left to bottom right in the eyepiece.

Object: 2 - Hercules Cluster… M13 / NGC6205
Date Observed: 10/12/03
Comments: RA 16h40m28.1s Dec +36 o 13' 35''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 19:53 EDT. Viewed with 13 mm Nagler Type 6 and Meade Super Wide Angle 24.5mm eyepieces. The 13mm worked best. This globular cluster looked dim, but dense and larger than most. There were two bright stars forming a vertical line below the cluster on the lower left of the FOV and one bright star above the cluster slightly to the right. This was one of the nicer globular clusters to look at.

Object: 3 – Ring Nebula… M57 / NGC6720
Date Observed: October 6, 2003
Comments: RA 18h53m08.9s Dec +33 o 08' 09''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 20:38 EDT. Viewed with 24.5 mm Meade Super Wide Angle. Looked somewhat dim due to waxing gibbous moon. Broadband filter did not help. Nebulous rings around a darker core with nebulous center. Brightest stars around it on lower right formed a "Y" shaped pattern.

Object: 4 - Saturn
Date Observed: May 4, 2003
Comments: Alt: 23o 38’ Az: 282 o 55’ ; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:08 EDT. Viewed with 7mm Nagler Type 6. Rings were at 45 o angle with planet (in star diagonal). Could see three satellites that were lined up in the shape of L rotated at about 110 degrees.

Object: 5 - Moon
Date Observed:
Comments: Coming Soon!

Object: 6 – Andromeda… M31 / NGC224
Date Observed: October 6, 2003
Comments: RA 00h40m48.0s Dec +40 o 58' 24''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:00 EDT. Viewed with 40mm University Optics Koenig. Looked somewhat dim due to waxing gibbous moon. Broadband filter did not help. Looked like faint globular cluster more than a galaxy. To the left were three stars that formed a rotated "L" pattern where the "L" was rotated -100 degrees.

Object: 7 – Dumbell Nebula… M27 / NGC6853
Date Observed: October 13, 2003
Comments: RA 20h 00 m 28.8s Dec +22 o 50' 09''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 20:36 EDT. Viewed with 24.5mm Meade Super Wide Angle and 13mm Nagler Type 6 eyepieces both with and without Thousand Oaks broadband filter. The 24.5mm without the filter gave the best view. This planetary nebula looked like a dumbbell standing on one end although it was very dim and the shape was difficult to make out. It was surrounded by relatively bright stars at the 1 o'clock and 6 o'clock positions and another at the 7 o'clock position that was lower in the FOV.

Object: 8 – Pleades / Seven Sisters… M45
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: RA 03h 47m 53.3s Dec +24 o 41' 38''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 22:27:10 EST. This was a very large open cluster with many (more than 7) bright stars. The cluster was very big would not fit in the FOV of my University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece. The stars seem to form rotated "U" like pattern (i.e., like a subset symbol in math).

Object: 9 – Jupiter
Date Observed: May 4, 2003
Comments: Alt: 54o 07’ Az: 248 o 14’ ; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:23 EDT. Viewed with 9mm Nagler Type 6. Bands of Jupiter were aligned at approximately 45 degrees (in star diagonal). Could see three moons that were all aligned on a straight line extending from between the bands to the lower left in the FOV.

Object: 10 – Wild Duck Cluster… M11 / NGC6705
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 18h 49m 39.6s Dec -05 o 55' 32''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 21:23:55 EDT. This observation was made at beautiful Lake Wateree, SC. I observed this dense open cluster with a 13mm Nagler Type 6, a Meade 24.5mm Super Wide Angle, and a 31 mm Nagler Type 5 eyepiece. It looked relatively better as the eyepiece power increased and was best with the 13mm. The cluster appeared to have a top and bottom core subset of stars with a small dark lane halfway through on the left side of my FOV. There was an open star field surrounding the core. I have been waiting quite a while to view this cluster, but it was definitely worth the wait. This site was one of the darkest at which I have observed. The Milky Way was very clear with the naked eye.

Object: 11 – Bodes Galaxy… M81 / NGC3031 & Cigar Galaxy… M82 / NGC 3034
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: I found M82 at RA 09h 55m 22.2s Dec +69 o 53' 25''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 22:58:36 EST. I observed it with University Optics MK-70 40mm and a Meade 24.5mm Super Wide Angle eyepieces. It was a faint, elongated, edge-on galaxy that appeared in the upper left to lower right of my FOV. The longer I looked at it the longer it seemed to be. It had three stars to the left of it. Two were at the 9 o'clock position and the third star that was furthest to the left was at the 10 o'clock position. This was the first edge-on galaxy that I have ever seen with my N8i. Very cool! When I had the 40mm eyepiece in my scope, I could see a galaxy/cluster like object to the lower left. I did not know this was M81 at first because I had these entries broken up in my SkyTools observing list. I was happy to eventually figure out that this was Bodes Galaxy (M81). I found it at RA 09h 53m 28.9s Dec +69 o 13' 30''; Time 23:09:25 EST. It looked like a round, small dim globular cluster; like the Andromeda galaxy. It had two faint stars extending out around the 7 o'clock position, and a second set of two stars even further to the left of it. This second pair was relatively brighter. I also viewed this object with both the 40mm and 24.5mm eyepieces.

Object: 12 – Swan Nebula… M17 / NGC6618
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 18h 20m 40.8s Dec -16 o 06' 07''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 22:20:23 EDT. I first viewed this nebula with a Nagler 31mm eyepiece using a Lumicon UHC filter. It was a smoky looking object resembling an upside down swan. It had a very sparse field of stars mainly on the upper right of my FOV. I also tried to view this object using a Meade Super Wide Angle 24.5mm eyepiece without the UHC filter. (I temporarily forgot that my 1.25" eyepiece adapter actually accepts filters.) However, I only saw a little hazy patch. The filter seemed to make a big difference.

Object: 13 – Albiero-Double… Double List
Date Observed: October 6, 2003
Comments: RA 19h31m33.6s Dec +27 o 52' 15''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 20:06 EDT. Viewed with 13mm Televue Nagler Type 6. Two stars lying on a vector at approximately 60 degrees. Lower left star appeared yellow whereas upper right star was darker.

Object: 14 – Perseus Double Cluster… NGC869 & NGC884
Date Observed: 10/12/03
Comments: RA 02h 16m 20.7s Dec +57 o 08' 31''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 22:12 EDT. Observed this double open cluster with a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece. There was an upper and lower cluster. The upper cluster was more compact and the lower cluster was more diffuse. I think this is one of the prettiest objects in the night sky.

Object: 15 – Whirlpool Galaxy… M51 / NGC5194
Date Observed: March 13, 04
Comments: RA 13h 28m 31.7s Dec +47 o 29' 44''; Observing Location: N 39o 18’ 36’’ W 76 o 54’ 36’’; Time: approximately 22:15 EST. This was a very challenging object. I searched for it several times over the course of 2 hours. Finally, a fellow club member showed me how to manually hop to it, and I mimicked his hop on my scope. I had both M51 and NGC 5195 in my FOV with a Televue 13mm Nagler Type 6 eyepiece. M51 was larger and looked kind of like a very faint globular. NGC 5195 was also very faint and globular looking. It was horizontally to the left of M51 and was noticeably smaller.

Object: 16 – Lagoon Nebula… M8 / NGC6523
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 18h 03m 48.8s Dec -24 o 24' 38''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 23:48:16 EDT. I first spotted this object using a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece with no filter. I quickly switched to a Nagler 31mm Type 5 with a Lumicon UHC filter attached to it. There was a small star cluster on the right of my FOV with approximately 11 stars in it. There were two pieces of smoky nebula to the left of my FOV - one at the 7 o'clock position and one at the 9 o'clock position. These two pieces of nebula had a dark lane between them. The nebula in the 7 o'clock position mixed in with the star cluster on the right side of the FOV. The nebula at the 9 o'clock position had two relatively bright stars inside of it and these stars formed a vertical line in my FOV. This was my last observation of the evening at Lake Wateree. It was a very productive evening in which I was able to observe 10 objects on the Nexstar List. I would like to go back there someday in the winter!

Object: 17 – Beehive Cluster… M44 / NGC2632
Date Observed: May 4, 2003
Comments: Alt: 51o 36’ Az: 253 o 47’ ; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:32 EDT. Viewed with 40mm MK-70. The cluster was about 1 degree to the right of Jupiter in the FOV. Many stars were visible and there were two triangular star patterns in the cluster.

Object: 18 – Western Veil Nebula… NGC6960 & Eastern Veil Nebula… NGC6992
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: NGC 6992 was located at RA 20h 56m 42.3s Dec +31 o 06' 40''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 19:49:10 EST. Viewed with University Optics 40mm MK-70 using a club mate's Lumicon O-III filter. Could not spot without filter. This object looked like a smoky banana that was laid horizontally across the sky. I had trouble finding NGC6960 due to my inexperience and some clouds that rolled in briefly. Initially I saw the bright blueish star near the nebula (Cyngus 52), but no nebula near it. My club mate lent me his Nagler 31mm (wow!) along with his Lumicon O-III, and I was able to spot the nebula to the upper left of the star. It was located at RA 20h 45m 15.4s Dec +30 o 40' 51'', and it took me until 20:15:23 EST to find it. It simply looked like a straight line of dust/nebula falling to the left of the star at about the 10 o'clock position. I was really worried that I would have to wait to observe this until 2004 due to the backordered Lumicon filters. Thanks to my club mate, I got it logged this year!

Object: 19 – Globular Cluster in Canes Venatici… M3 (Approved substitute for: Omega Centauri… NGC5139)
Date Observed: March 29, 2004
Comments: RA 13h 41m 02.7s Dec +28 o 35' 49''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 23:32 EST. Viewed this object with both a 24.5mm Meade Super Wide Angle and a Televue Nagler 13mm Type 6 eyepiece. This was a large and dense globular cluster. It was relatively bright in the light polluted sky that was particularly bad with a waxing crescent moon to the west. The cluster was set in between some relatively bright stars that form a triangle. This is a nice object for an 8" scope.

Object: 20 – Globular in Sagittarius… M22 / NGC6656
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 18h 36m 04.4s Dec -23 o 36' 07''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 22:35:45 EDT. This was a very nice globular cluster densely packed with very fine (tiny) stars. I viewed this with a 31mm Nagler Type 5, a Meade Super Wide 24.5mm, and a Nagler 13mm Type 6 eyepiece. The star cluster looked coarser with the 13mm and took up approximately one-half of the FOV. It looked quite nice with the 24.5mm which showed a very loose star field surrounding the star cluster. The loose star field took up all of the FOV on the 24.5mm eyepiece.

Object: 21 – Butterfly Cluster… M6 / NGC6405
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 17h 40m 01.1s Dec -32 o 22' 08''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 23:26:20 EDT. I first viewed this very nice open cluster with a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece. It really is shaped like a butterfly, albeit an upside down butterfly in my FOV. It also looked nice in a 31mm Nagler Type 5 eyepiece, although the butterfly-like shape was less apparent at this magnification.

Object: 22 – Double Double – Epsilon Lyra 1 & 2… Double List
Date Observed: October 13, 2003
Comments: RA 18h 43m 12.8s Dec +39 o 25' 32''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 20:12 EDT. Split with 7mm Nagler Type 6 eyepiece. Barely split with 9mm Nagler Type 6 and not really split with Nagler 13 mm Type 6 eyepieces. Both Epsilon Lyra 1 and 2 were in the same FOV. Epsilon Lyra 2 was on the right side of the FOV and was split in a vertical direction. There were three small stars to its left that looked like hands of a clock at 5 o'clock. Epsilon Lyra 1 was on the left side of the FOV and was split horizontally. The star on the right of this pair looked slightly brighter.

Object: 23 – Globular Cluster in Serpens… M5 (Approved Substitution for Jewel Box… NGC4755)
Date Observed: March 29, 2004
Comments: RA 15h 17m 19.1s Dec +02 o 26' 37''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 23:45 EST. This was a medium size globular cluster about half the diameter of M3. I viewed it with a 24.5 Meade Super Wide eyepiece and a Televue Nagler 13mm Type 6 eyepiece. It seemed to have one or two brighter stars on the bottom edge right outside of the cluster. There was also a relatively bright star at the 7 o'clock position in my FOV using the 24.5mm. I was able to see more faint neighboring stars surrounding the cluster when I used the 13mm. Like M3, this is a nice object for my 8" SCT.

Object: 24 – Blue Snowball Planetary Nebula… NGC7662
Date Observed: 2/22/04
Comments: RA 23h 23m 38.2s Dec +42 o 31' 32'';Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: approximately 20:25 EST. Observed this planetary nebula with a 13mm Televue Nagler Type 6 eyepiece along with a Lumicon UHC filter. The object looked "blueish" in color, but the filter does tint stars to make them a sort of green/blue, so I cannot be exact about the color of this object. The nebula looked like a large fuzzy star, or more appropriately, a small blue disk. It was quite hazy in its appearance, but if I looked hard and long, a ring appeared to encircle the perimeter of the disk. Very neat object.

Object: 25 – Spiral Galaxy… M66 / NGC3627
Date Observed: 2/22/04
Comments: RA 11h 20m 8.4s Dec +13 o 17' 47''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: approximately 21:50 EST. I REALLY lucked out on this one! As you can see from my RA/Dec reports, my go-to performance is not the best, so I have to manually search the area. As I was slewing at rate 4 from the original go-to spot, I saw something that looked like a really small smudge in the eyepiece. On any other night, I might have slewed right past it, but not tonight. I was using a 31mm Televue Nagler Type 5 eyepiece. I looked hard at the object, and eventually saw that it was an edge-on "fuzzy" that looked like a line increasing from left to right at about 45 degrees (Cartesian units). It had four dim stars above and two the right of it. The kind of looked like the number "7" with the top bent down too far. I have to say that these list objects are getting very hard to spot with my 8" in these Mid-Atlantic skies. Good news…before I centered the object in my FOV to take the RA/Dec reading, I saw a wider looking "fuzzy" in the top left of my eyepiece. It turned out to be the next object on my list (M65).

Object: 26 – Coathanger – CR399… Asterism List
Date Observed: 10/12/03
Comments: RA 19h 23m 25.7s Dec +19 o 57' 09''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:41 EDT. Observed this open cluster with a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece. (It actually looked more like a coat hanger through my 8 x 50mm finderscope.) The cluster looked like an upside down coat hanger that was rotated about 40 degrees. The longer edge of the cluster was made up of 6 bright stars, and there were four stars that made up the "hook" end of the coat hanger.

Object: 27 – Galaxy in Leo… M65 / NGC3623
Date Observed:
Comments: RA 11h 18m 54.5s Dec +13 o 19' 44'';Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: approximately 21:55 EST. I viewed this galaxy with a 31mm Televue Nagler Type 5 eyepiece. This galaxy was broader than its companion galaxy (M66) in my FOV even though all the pictures I have seen display it as narrower than M66. Like M66, it also appeared to tilt up from left to right. It was a very faint, fuzzy smudge in my FOV. It was surrounded by faint stars directly above and to the left of it. Before centering this to obtain the RA/Dec reading from my HC, I had both M65 and M66 in the same FOV. I felt very lucky!

Object: 28 – Ptolemy’s Cluster… M7 / NGC6475
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 17h 53m 16.3s Dec -34 o 56' 35''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 23:31:30 EDT. This is a very large open cluster. The stars in the right side of my FOV seemed to form a reflection of the alphabetic characters "PC" with the reflected "P" tilted somewhat to the left. The cluster was denser on the right side of my FOV and the star field continued out of the FOV on the lower left. This cluster also looked nice with a Meade Super Wide Angle 24.5mm eyepiece although it did not fit in the FOV completely. When viewing with a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece, the entire cluster and star field on the lower left was in the FOV.

Object: 29 – Bernice’s Hair Clip… NGC4565
Date Observed: April 9, 2004
Comments: RA 12h 37m 39.2s Dec +25 o 58' 34''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: approximately 23:05 EDT. This was an edge on galaxy that was oriented vertically in the eyepiece. It was not as dim as M100 and was more easily spotted. There were four stars above it to the left that seemed to form a parallelogram. There were also four relatively bright stars to the lower left that had an "L" shaped pattern. This galaxy was viewed with a Televue 31 mm and a 24.5mm Meade Super Wide Angle eyepiece, and it looked better in the 31mm. This was a challenging find. I had previously looked for this galaxy and M100 on several occasions with no success.

Object: 30 – Globular in Pegasus… M15 / NGC7078
Date Observed: October 6, 2003
Comments: RA 21h29m59.2s Dec +12 o 30' 03''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:53 EDT. Viewed with 24.5 mm Meade Super Wide Angle. Looked somewhat dim due to waxing gibbous moon. This globular cluster was even smaller than M92 in apparent size. The three nearest stars looked like an upside down, elongated "V", and M15 was positioned inside of this star pattern.

Object: 31 – Owl Cluster… NGC457
Date Observed: 10/12/03
Comments: RA 01h 15m 06.4s Dec +58 o 25' 59''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 20:10 EDT. Observed with both a University Optics MK-70 40mm Koenig and a Meade 24.5mm Super Wide Angle eyepiece. It was only with the former eyepiece that I was able to first spot the "ET" pattern in this cluster with "feet" at about 7 o'clock formed by two bright stars. As my eyes moved to the upper right of the FOV, (i.e., the 2 o'clock position) the body and head became apparent. The body had long "arms" to either side. (These "arms" combined with the "feet" also reminded me of a B2 stealth bomber.) After I saw the "ET" pattern with the 40mm, it was easy to spot with the 24.5. One can see why this pattern also resembles an "owl" and a "lobster" and it is often called by these names as well. This object was a lot of fun to observe! (November 21, 2003: Note, my club mates have since told me that what I interpreted to be the "head" of ET was actually its "feet". Oh well.)

Object: 32 – Milky Way
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: approximately 19:30 EST. The Milky way ran trough the Summer Triangle (Vega, Deneb, Altair) into Cassiopeia. This was a sign of a fine night of observing to come!

Object: 33 – Trapezium in Orion… Center of M42
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: RA 05h 34m 21.7s Dec -04 o 37' 05''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 22:50:34 EST. These stars were observed with a Meade Super Wide Angle 24.5 mm eyepiece mainly because I wanted to see more of the nebula background. There were four stars that formed a tight "rectangle" where the right side of the rectangle was larger than the left in my field of view. I probably should have increased the power, but I didn't.

Object: 34 – Open Cluster in Puppis… M46 / NGC2437
Date Observed: January 31, 2004
Comments: RA 07h 41m 46.4s Dec -14 o 29' 41''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:35 EST. First opportunity to use a new Nagler Type 5 31mm eyepiece. It was a lot of fun. There was a waxing moon giving off a lot of light. In the light, the open cluster looked very dim. It was large and contained pinpoint size stars. It was surrounded by brighter stars to the left and bottom of my FOV and these bright stars formed a sort of reflected check mark.

Object: 35 – Double Triangle (Star Gate)… Asterism List
Date Observed: April 17, 2004
Comments: RA 12h 35m 34.0s Dec -11 o 56' 47''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 23:25 EDT. This was an interesting star configuration. I spotted it between two trees about an hour before some clouds moved in, so I feel lucky with this one. The leftmost star of the outer triangle appeared tilted up 45 degrees from the horizontal position. This star and the corresponding star on the right were the brightest. The third outer star was somewhat dim. Similarly, the brightest inner triangle stars were the two that were almost parallel to the brightest outer stars. The third star in the inner triangle was quite dim and seemed to come in and out of view. I viewed this object with a 24.5mm Meade Super Wide Angle eyepiece, a 13mm Televue Nagler Type 6 eyepiece, and a 9mm Televue Type 6 eyepiece. The 9mm provided the best view.

Object: 36 – 24 Com Double… Double List
Date Observed: April 17, 2004
Comments: RA 12h 36m 12.0s Dec 18 o 22' 35''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 23:41 EDT. This was a very cool double star which was easy to resolve with a 24.5mm Meade Super Wide Angle eyepiece. However, things got more interesting when I increase the power using 13mm, 9mm,, and 7mm Televue Nagler Type 6 eyepieces. With the 24.5, I could not tell that the color of the stars was different. With the 13mm, I could barely see a color difference. The 9mm gave the best view. The star of the left of my FOV appeared blue-green in color whereas the star on the right seemed a yellowish white. The 7mm did not seem to help because the transparency was not good enough to support it.

Object: 37 – Open Cluster in Sagittarius… M25 / IC4725
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 18h 31m 31.1s Dec -19 o 14' 44''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 21:41:10 EDT. This was a big open cluster that filled the FOV using both a University optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece and a 31mm Nagler Type 5 eyepiece. This wide cluster had a tiny sparse core. There was a set a small dim stars that seemed to form a parallelogram.

Object: 38 – Open Cluster in Gemini… M35 / NGC2168
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: RA 06h 09m 07.9s Dec +24 o 43' 36''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 21:52:29 EST. Observed this open cluster with a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece. It was a very sparse and large cluster that covered about 40%-50% of the FOV. Interestingly, its center appeared to have some lanes that were void of noticeable stars.

Object: 39 – Open Cluster in Cepheus… NGC7510
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: RA 23h 09m 52.9s Dec +60 o 38' 39''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 21:34:01 EST. I observed this cluster with both a Meade 24.5mm Super Wide Angle and a Televue 13mm Nagler Type 6. It was an interesting open cluster. It was somewhat small and compact and had three relatively brighter stars that formed a triangle. One point of the triangle was located at about 11 o'clock in my FOV and the other two were down to the right. The inside of this triangle was filled with dimmer stars that almost looked like nebula.

Object: 40 – Globular Cluster in Hercules… M92 / NGC6341
Date Observed: October 6, 2003
Comments: RA 17h18m16.1s Dec +43 o 20' 58''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 21:42 EDT. Viewed with 40mm University Optics Koenig and with 24.5 mm Meade Super Wide Angle. Looked somewhat dim due to waxing gibbous moon. This globular cluster was medium in size relative to others I have observed. The brightest stars near it were positioned at 1 and 5 o'clock relative to the cluster.

Object: 41 – Open Cluster in Auriga…M37 (Approved Substitution for 47 Tucanae… NGC104)
Date Observed: April 9, 2004
Comments: RA 05h 51m 58.4s Dec +32 o 24' 05''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 20:45 EDT. This was an open cluster with a densely packed center and a larger periphery of sparse stars. Viewed with 24.5mm Meade Super Wide Angle, Televue 13mm Nagler Type 6 and 40mm GTO Wide Angle eyepieces. The 13mm gave the best view of a brilliant core where every star seemed to be resolved, but there were so many of them.

Object: 42 – Galaxy in Andromeda… NGC891
Date Observed:
Comments: Coming Soon!

Object: 43 – Open Cluster in Ophiuchus… NGC6633
Date Observed: 10/12/03
Comments: RA 18h 27m 02.0ss Dec +06 o 20' 22''; Observing Location: N 39o 09’ 23’’ W 76 o 50’ 19’’; Time: 19:39 EDT. Observed this open cluster with a Meade 24.5 Super Wide Angle eyepiece. The cluster crosses the FOV from the lower left to the upper right with more stars concentrated in the lower left portion. This was not a remarkable open cluster in my opinion.

Object: 44 – Galaxy in Coma Berenices… M100 / NGC4321
Date Observed: April 9, 2004
Comments: RA 12h 23m 57.1s Dec +15 o 45' 51'';Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: approximately 23:22 EDT. This was an extremely faint circular galaxy. The seeing conditions made it especially difficult to observe, and the image would fade in and out a little bit. The galaxy had four visible stars on the right of my FOV. The stars were formed a curved line that seemed to trace the hands of a clock at 1:30. There was a relatively bright star to the lower left of the galaxy in my field of view. I viewed this with both a Televue Nagler 31 mm and a 24.5 Mead Super Wide Angle eyepiece. Another tough galaxy to spot in 4th magnitude skies.

Object: 45 – Open Cluster in Auriga…M38 (Approved Substitution for Table of Scorpius… NGC6231)
Date Observed: April 9, 2004
Comments: RA 05h 29m 22.4s Dec +35 o 56' 16'';Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 21:03 EDT. Open cluster with interesting pattern. The center was somewhat sparse, but there were more densely packed "spokes" that looked like a plus sign or a cross. (Kind of appropriate for me since this was Good Friday.) Viewed the cluster with a 13mm Televue Nagler Type 6 and a 24.5 Meade Super Wide Angle eyepiece. It looked best in the 24.5mm eyepiece.

Object: 46 – Trifid Nebula… M20 / NGC6514
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 18h 01m 11.4s Dec -23 o 08' 48''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 22:55:16 EDT. I first looked at this nebula using a Nagler 31mm Type 5 with a Lumicon UHC filter. It appeared circular in form with a single bright star in the middle. I could not see any lanes in the nebula. When I switched to a 13mm Nagler Type 6 without the UHC filter, I could no longer see the nebula. However, the single star split into a double star. The same results were obtained when I used a Meade Super Wide 24.5 eyepiece without the filter.

Object: 47 – Betelgeuse… Named Star
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments: RA 05h 56m 22.8s Dec +08 o 14' 13''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 22:37:09 EST. I observed this very bright star with a Nagler 13mm Type 6 eyepiece. It was very bright and had a hazy yellowish hue to it.

Object: 48 - Globular in Sagittarius... M55 / NGC6809
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 19h 38m 42.9s Dec -30 o 26' 22''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 23:16:36 EDT. Using a 31mm Nagler Type 5 eyepiece, this globular cluster looked more like a dim galaxy than a globular cluster. It was a very dim circular patch of stars. It was just too dim when I used a 13mm Nagler Type 6 eyepiece. It looked okay with a Meade Super Wide Angle 24.5mm eyepiece, but the 31mm Nagler provided the nicest view.

Object: 49 – Open Cluster in Auriga… M36 / NGC1960
Date Observed: November 21, 2003
Comments:
Comments: RA 05h 35m 19.6s Dec +34 o 37' 19''; Observing Location: N 39o 19’ 04’’ W 77 o 03’ 13’’; Time: 21:50:20 EST. I observed this cluster with a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece. This was a large, sparse open cluster (like M35). There were a group of stars protruding from the upper left of the cluster at about 11 o'clock that resembled a "star tail".

Object: 50 – Eagle Nebula & Cluster… M16 / NGC6611
Date Observed: August 16, 2004
Comments: RA 18h 18m 25.6s Dec -13 o 42' 38''; Observing Location: N 34o 22’ 11’’ W 80 o 45’ 47’’; Time: 22:07:30 EDT. I viewed this open cluster with a University Optics MK-70 40mm eyepiece and with a 31mm Nagler Type 5 eyepiece. I used a Lumicon UHC filter with the 31mm. The cluster looked like a reflected alphabetic "S" character with more stars on the top of the "S". There was a loose star field below it on the lower left of the FOV. When I used the 31mm with the UHC filter, I was able to see some nebulosity in the upper part of the "S" pattern.