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Thread: Binocular DSOs beyond Messier, NGC, and IC: Winter through Spring

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    Default Binocular DSOs beyond Messier, NGC, and IC: Winter through Spring



    Hello friends of binocular astronomy,

    this is a list of easy binocular deep sky objects, that have not been included in the widespread catalogues. The coverage of the season is: Cassiopeia, Perseus, Taurus, Orion, Gemini and Monoceros. Besides the Sharpless emission nebulas, most of the listed DSOs are open clusters or associations of stars.

    Stock 2 in Cassiopeia forms an easily recognizable Muscleman asterism not far above the Perseus Double Cluster. Put the Double Cluster low right, and the Stock 2 is at upper left in your field. Both clusters are easy with small binos.

    One move left up, and the Markarian 6 makes a dense streak of stars. In fact, Mrk 6 marks the southern edge of a large nebular complex, the Valentin's Heart Nebula, Sharpless 2-190. I can see this part of the otherwise challenging Valentin's Heart at best with 15x85. North to it in your field is the visually brightest part of the Valentin's Heart, the light emission associated with the cluster IC 1805, visible already in small binos.

    Move to your left to find the otherwise unremarkable cluster IC 1848. Here around is the extended Valentin's Soul Nebula, Sharpless 2-199. I can fix the upper dim edge with 15x85.

    One another move to your left and a small cluster of bright stars, Stock 23 at the Cassiopei/Camelopardalis border, can be seen with small binos.

    Moving back to Perseus, another streak of stars, Trumpler 2, is west of Eta Persei.

    One of the most impressive dense groups of stars is the moving group Melotte 20 around Alpha Persei. Don't mis the yellow Sigma Persei, making a nice colour contrast with the surrounding white-bluish stars.

    The Hyades in Taurus is another moving group of stars, actually seen with unaided eyes. North to it is a vertical stream of stars with nice binaries.

    Collinder 65 around 116 Tauri at the Taurus/Orion border is with some 4deg diameter one of the largest clusters. I get it at best with the wide field (11deg) 7x35. Nort-east to it is the bright red star CE Tauri with the spectral class M2.

    Orion is another constellation containing numerous DSOs beyond Messier, NGC, and IC.

    Collinder 70 at the Orion's belt is the most popular "Collinder" in Orion. I can get it at best with 15x85. West to it is the orange star CI Orioni.

    Move up to Lambda Orioni. The vertical stream of stars here belongs to Collinder 69. Above this stream is a bright orange star (spectral class k5), SAO 94702.

    Fix Gamma Orioni. NW to it is a streak of some 5 stars, Dolidze 17.

    Barnard's Loop, Sharpless 2-276, is one of the largest emission nebulas, within the reach of binos. I have tried it many times, with different binos, with and without filters. I have seen it (for definitely sure) this year with the wide (11deg) 7x35 as an extended arc. That is why the low magnification and wide field helps.

    I have described a bino tour through Gemini elsewhere, but there is one more DSO in Gemini. Collinder 89 is a sparse field of some 6 or more bright stars between MU Gemini and M35.

    Finally, there is one celestial wonder more, in Monoceros. The open cluster NGC 2301 is a dense stream of stars, easy to find due to its proximity with the Einsten's Asterism, which is another dense stream of stars inclined to NGC 2301. To the right is Dolidze 25. Whatever bino you will take, there are only 2 vertically aligned stars to be seen. However, this cluster is something what has been left from the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy, after this dwarf galaxy has been swallowed by our home galaxy, the Milky Way.

    Due to the horribly bad weather we have here around, I had time to put such a long writing.

    Clear skies

    JG

    binos: 7x35 (11deg) Asahi Pentax vintage, Leica Ultravid 7x42, marines: 10.5x70, 15x85; 25x100FB
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    Excellent JG. The one good thing about cloudy skies is you can use the time for research and writing. To me, open clusters provide some of the best targets for binoculars of various sizes. Here is a nice list of 250 of the most prominent ones that should give binocular (and telescopic) observers plenty of good times under the stars.

    Open Clusters
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    Quote Originally Posted by KT4HX View Post
    Excellent JG. The one good thing about cloudy skies is you can use the time for research and writing. To me, open clusters provide some of the best targets for binoculars of various sizes. Here is a nice list of 250 of the most prominent ones that should give binocular (and telescopic) observers plenty of good times under the stars.

    Open Clusters
    Thanks Alan!

    I have the open clusters in the "Orion Arm", but anyway I've saved the bookmark you sent me to remember a direct access.

    It is a nice hobby to trace the spiral arms of the Milky Way with the open clusters. Some of them are the real tracers, other are somewhere between. I'll take time to start it.

    Best

    JG

    binos: 7x35(11deg) Asahi Pentax vintage, Leica Ultravid 7x42, marines: 10.5x70, 15x85; 25x100FB

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    I figured you had that information already, being the organized observer you are! Hopefully the link will benefit some others who are looking for new targets to chase with binoculars.
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    Default Re: Binocular DSOs beyond Messier, NGC, and IC: Winter through Spring

    Stock 2, Melotte 20, and Collinder 70 are some of my favorites.
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