Saturday, December 30, 2000

Two nights down, one to go

I've viewed NGC 1664 over several nights the past week or so. Last night my notes say (using 10" f/5.6 and 20 Nagler) "Fan shaped cluster to west of a bright star in the field. A chain of stars runs south from the edge fo the cluster. The brighter members of the group seem to form the perimiter of the formation." Another night's notes state "Bright star very close to the southeast side, a chaing going south of the central condensation to its west, another chain to the east."

One of the fun backyard objects from a few nights ago was was NGC1931: "Open cluster with nebulousity. Somewhat mimicking a planetary nebula in size and appearance. With higher power (7mm) three or more stars break apart embedded in the nebulousity."

Another nice surprise was using my 10x50 binoculars on a few objects in the Night Sky Observers Guide (again, in my backyard). Collinder 70 - Orion's Belt stars and their surrounding field are magnificient. The three bright stars are set amid a very rich field. Nice chains curving gracefully through the western to stars, hooking east below and west above, then south around the western end star in the belt. Gorgeous!

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