After a another cloudless day, a trip to Kumeu to do some observing was on the agenda. Michelle came along as well, with the kids being looked after by Michelle's parents. The care was already packed from yesterday, as I tried to go down south the previous evening. However last night clouded over, just on sunset. No cloud in sight tonight so off we went.

Alastair Duhs and Guy Thornley were already there, and I set up on the drive. Dave Moorhouse arrived about 30 minutes later.

My Argo Navis was preloaded with lots of nice objects not seen in awhile. Planned to be out for just on 2 1/2 hours.

 
Observations as follows;
 
Object Type Magnification Notes
C/2008 Q3
Garradd
Comet
113X
Conspicuous and bright, small tail noted. Nice.
Saturn Planet 113X Rings edge-on now. Few moons visible. Just a passing view.
NGC5139
Omega Centauri
Globular Cluster
113X
Omega Centauri almost straight up. The contrast was not as good as you would expect due to semi rural skies.
NGC3372
Eta Carina Nebula
Bright Nebula
113X
Nice views of eta Carinae tonight, better contrast as it is past the meridian slipping towards the darker west.
eta Car
Homunculus
Bright Nebula
113X
Homunclus bright and clear, both lobes clearly visible with significant detail.
NGC5189
Spiral Planetary
Planetary Nebula
113X
Bright irregular planetary in Musca. Nice contrast.
NGC5844
The Diffuse Planetary
Planetary Nebula
113X
Moderately bright and large planetary nebula. Slightly oval.
NGC4755
Jewel Box
Open Cluster
113X
 
NGC5897 Globular Cluster
113X
Large globular cluster, fairly diffuse and faint.
NGC5878
Galaxy
113X
Small compact galaxy with a strong core and a diffuse halo. Perhaps a face-on sprial.
NGC5915
Galaxy
113X
Small compact galaxy with a strong core.
NGC5898
Galaxy
113X
Nice galactic pair. Even in brightness and both slightly oval in shape.
NGC5903
Galaxy
113X
Nice galactic pair. Even in brightness and both slightly oval in shape.
NGC5791
Galaxy
113X
Very compact galaxy with a strong core. Almost stellar.
NGC5861
Galaxy
113X
Faint galaxy with a diffuse halo and not much of a core. Fairly large and oval.
NGC5757
Galaxy
113X
Small compact galaxy, diffuse, next to an equi-bright equilateral triangle of 11th mag stars.
NGC5728
Galaxy
113X
Moderately bright oval (4:1) galaxy, with a strong core and a diffuse halo.
NGC5812
Galaxy
113X
Small compact galaxy with a strong core. Almost looks like a planetary nebula.
NGC5597
Galaxy
113X
Galactic pair. Both faint and oval and of the same brightness, with no real detail.
NGC5595
Galaxy
113X
Galactic pair. Both faint and oval and of the same brightness, with no real detail.
NGC5792
Galaxy
113X
Round, bright galaxy, even in brightness. Has a 10th mag star right on the edge of the halo.
M5 Globular Cluster
113X
 
NGC5846
Galaxy
113X
Oval galaxy with what appears to have two nucleii. Must be two interacting galaxies. Bright and conspicious.
NGC5850
Galaxy
113X
Faint oval galaxy, near NGC5846.
NGC5813 Galaxy
113X
Large oval galaxy with an even brightness.
NGC5838 Galaxy
113X
Small compact galaxy with a strong core. No halo noted.
NGC5746
Double Hub Galaxy
Galaxy
113X
Bright galaxy. Long and skinny with a dark lane. Very nice object.
NGC3242
Ghost of Jupiter
Planetary Nebula
113X
Last look at the 'Ghost of Jupiter' before it disappears till late next spring. Nice and contrasty in the NW.
NGC3115
Spindle Galaxy
Galaxy
113X
Spindle Galaxy. Bright lenticular shaped galaxy.
Baade's Window DkNeb
113X
 
NGC6522 Globular Cluster
113X
Small fairly bright globular cluster in Baade's Window
NGC6528 Globular Cluster
113X
Small globular cluster in Baade's Window
Barnard92
The Black Hole in Space
Dark Nebula
113X
 
Barnard86
Ink Spot Nebula
Dark Nebula
113X
 
Barnard87
Parrot's Head Dark Nebula
Dark Nebula
113X
 
M17
Omega/Swan Nebula
Bright Nebula
113X
 
Djorg2
Djorgovski 2
Globular Cluster
113X
Starry knot/cluster in rich Milky Way.
NGC6362 Globular Cluster
113X
Nice rich globular cluster in Ara. Loose, probably a Type 10. Fairly large, about 8 arc minutes.
NGC6193
Open Cluster
113X
Bright scattered open clsuter with about 15 stars. There is nebulosity in the whole region, noted by panning across the field.
NGC6164
The Twins
Planetary Nebula
113X
NGC6164/NGC6165 Double Nebula. Nebulous regions more the" arc minutes from the bright Wolf Ryet Star.
M8
Lagoon Nebula
Bright Nebula
113X
 
M20
Trifid Nebula
Bright Nebula
113X
 
NGC6067
Open Cluster
113X
Bright Open cluster with 100 to 150 members.'0 brighter members the rest 11th or 12th mag.
NGC6451
Tom Thumb Cluster
Open Cluster
113X
Small open cluster of 50 or 60 members of an even brightness. Cluster is compact not the much bigger than 5 arc minutes across.
NGC6302
Bug Nebula
Planetary Nebula
113X
Extended biploar PN. Very high surface brightness and looks 'pinched' across the middle.
IC4663 Planetary Nebula
113X
A nearly stellar PN but definately non-stellar. Well defined and fairly easy to spot.
NGC6369
Little Ghost Nebula
Planetary Nebula
113X
A small planetary nebula, round and diffuse. Not easy to spot.
NGC6026 Planetary Nebula
113X
Round planetary with a bright central star. Nice even disc.
NGC6326 Planetary Nebula
113X
A round high surface brightness planetary, fairly small but easy to spot.
NGC6337
Scorpion Ring
Planetary Nebula
113X
Wonderful annular planetary nebula. Strong ring and appears hollow. Bright and round, conspicious.
IC4642
Shapley 2
Planetary Nebula
113X
Small compact and fairly easy PN. Very small and even in brightness.
NGC6445
Square Shaped Ring
Planetary Nebula
113X
Small, bright, irregular PN. Nice pair with as the globular NGC6440.
NGC6440 Globular Cluster
113X
Compact globular. Not resoved at all. In the same field as NGC6445.
He2-207
The S Shaped Planetary
Planetary Nebula
113X
Very faint planetary nebula. Round and very diffuse.
NGC5927 Globular Cluster
113X
Bright compact globular cluster, partially resolved.
NGC5946 Globular Cluster
113X
Faint, small, globular with an even brightness. In fine field
     

Very cold night, with Michelle rugging up with a hot water bottle. Nice coffee break half way through to keep the blood flowing.

Argo Navis pointed very well all night, no realignments etc, just works well.

Spent a little time in Libra crusing around looking at some of the brighter galaxies, a few nice planetary nebulae. Comet C/2008 Q3 Garradd was bright with a nice compact tail.

Nice to be out again, probably only once this month, but that's OK.

 
Paul Kemp
13.1" f5 Reflector with Argo Navis
Auckland, New Zealand
36° 55' 09 " South, 174° 43' 30" East
-- The Southern Sentinel --