Sagittarius and Scorpius September 30 2011

With Scorpius and Sagittarius low in the sky, I thought I would catch a few Messier objects before they disappear for the season.

The moon is a thin crescent. Seeing is 4 out of 5. Transparency is 3 out of 5. Temperature 78 degrees, humidity 48. No wind. No clouds.

Instrument: Questar 3.5

M 69, NGC 6637 Sagittarius.
Globular Cluster
Magnitude 7.6
8:00 pm local
Very faint. Hint of elongation W-E. The core is brighter. There is some mottled appearance. Averted vision helps to see this mottling. The halo around the core is hazy.

M 69

M 70, NGC 6681- Sagittarius
Globular Cluster
Magnitude 8.0
8:15 pm local
Globular cluster in a field of stars. Central star-like core has an outer halo.

M 70

M 54, NGC 6715 - Sagittarius
Globular Cluster
Magnitude 7.6
8:30 pm local
Of the three Globular Clusters in Sagittarius (69, 70, and 54) this is the brightest and slightly larger. Diffuse ball, well defined core, averted vision resolves some mottling in the center.

M 54
M 54 - a photo of the object, using the Slooh telescope in the Canary Islands.
This image is viewed with N on top,
but the E is on the left and the W is on the right.
Many telescopes invert the views,
while the Questar shows all directions as true.
This shows the difference between the eye and the camera.

M 6, NGC 6405 - Scorpius
Open Cluster
Magnitude 4.2
Called the "Butterfly Cluster"
8:45 pm local
Cluster of fine stars. Some differences in magnitude.

M 6 - Butterfly Cluster

M 7 NGC 6475 - Scorpius
Open Cluster
Magnitude 3.3
8:55 pm local
Large and loose cluster of 20 plus stars. There is a distinct line of nebulosity on the south side. The nebulosity is fainter but present along the east.

M 7
M 22, NGC 6656, Sagittarius
Globular Cluster
Magnitude 5.1
9:00 pm local
Large Globular Cluster. Mottling is quickly visible. With patience eye adjustments to resolve several stars at the core. Large halo.

M 22

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