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Selected Objects from June 15, 2018 Session at Blue Canyon

When I arrived at Blue Canyon, about 4 others were already there setting up.  When I finished setting up, 2 others showed up making a total of 7 of us there on a rare Friday evening observing session for me.  I decided to make the trip a day early as the forecast called for 10-20% chance or rain the following day.

Sunset with 22"

NELM was about 6.5, but seeing was above average and transparency was above average for this site.  This collection of objects listed below were high over the southwestern horizon and fairly close to the upper part of the Sacramento light dome.

As usual, all objects listed here are in my downloadable observing guides, in this particular case it is in the VV Part I guide.  Enjoy and hopefully you will try of these objects. 

It was nice getting out and taking a more "serious" approach to observing.  The level of difficulty of these object is a bit less challenging than what I'm accustomed to. Not "seriously observing for 4 years, I didn't want to be frustrated, so I selected some mid-level objects based on my capability.

Note:  The coordinates, size and magnitudes are from the VV list otherwise noted.  References and components are always listed from west to east according to RA.

Equipment used for this observing session:
22 f/4 reflector with Crossbow platform
24mm TeleVue Panoptic finder eyepiece
12.5, 9 and 7mm Baader Genuine Orthoscopics
10 and 6mm Zeiss ZAO-II Orthoscopics

VV335VV 335 (13 55 59.6  +17 30 21    0.9x0.6', 0.7x0.2'   mag 14.5, 15.5)
(22 - 255, 328 and 383x)
This is the first object of the evening, so I wasn't quite warmed up. Component B was pretty easy to find even with the finder eyepiece running at 96x.  Appears as a 3x1 elongated glow with defined edge and even surface brightness.  Component A was a bit more difficult to see, but picked up nearly 100% of the time as a small diffuse round even surface brightness glow.  I didn't see it until I bumped it up to 383x with my 6mm Zeiss ZAO-II, but when I dialed it down to 255 and 328x with the 9 and 7mm Baader Genuine Orthoscopic eyepieces, I was able to see it nearly 100% of the time knowing where to look for it.

VV 103VV 103 (14 07 00.1    0.8x0.5'    mag 14.8)
(22 - 255, 328 and 383x)
The object appears as a ghostly slightly elongated glow with diffuse edges.  Surface brightness is a bit lower than I expected when I saw it for the first time with my 24mm Panoptic finder eyepiece.   Elongated about E-W   I also noted that the "star" is actually a star, but picked up only 50% of the time at the southern edge.

VV 299VV 299 (14 13 06.9  +08 37 31   0.6x0.2', 0.6x0.6'    mag 15.8g, 15.0)
(22 - 184, 255 and 328x)
Component A was seen as a considerably bright 2x1 elongated object with defined edges and a much brighter elongated center.  PA is nearly N-S.  Component B was a bit of a challenge, appears as a low and even surface brightness round ghostly glow with diffuse edges.
Good view of two distinctly different objects, one a low surface brightness spiral and one nearly edge on high surface brightness galaxy.

VV 70VV 70 (14 13 38.8  +07 39 34    1.0x0.5'', 0.8x0.7''    mag 14.5, 15.5)
(22 - 255 and 328x)
Component A was immediately seen as a 2x1 elongated glow with defined edges with a brighter center.  PA is about E-W.  After some patience, component B was seen attached to the east edge of component A that was visible about 50% of the time.  Once both are picked up at the same time, the pair appeared as an "L".

The Sloan Digital Sky Survey image shows it as a mini version of the Antennae Galaxy (NGC 4038, 4039)  in Corvus.

VV 223VV 223 (14 13 44.7  +08 13 13    1.0x0.2', 0.4x0.2', 0.5x0.2'    mag 16.0g, 14.7, 15.3)
(22 - 184, 255 and 328x)
Components A and B was immediately picked up as an equally bright double galaxy that forms a tight parallelogram with the double star to the SW of the pair.  Both are round with brighter nearly stellar cores.  Component C was fairly challenging to pick up as it popped in and out 75% of the time.  Low surface brightness 3x1 elongated  glow with a very slightly brighter center.

VV 109
VV 109 (14 46 02.8 +08 30 11    1.2x0.4', 0.4x0.2'    mag 15.4, 15.7g)
(22 184, 255, 328 and 383x)
Component a was not an easy object is it is literally to the north of a magnitude 11.5 star.  Using averted vision and a bit of patience, I picked it up popping in and out more than 75% of the time.  Appeared as a 4x1 elongated ghostly even surface brightness glow with somewhat diffuse edges.  PA is about 90 degrees.  It's neighbor, component B was fairly easy to see, a 2.1 elongated glow with defined edges and a much brighter center.  Component B is about half the size of component A.

VV 26
VV 26 (14 56 53.1 +09 16 18    1.0x0.9', unlisted    mag 14.4, 18.7 (from SDSS))
(22 255, 328 and 383x) Component A was seen as a round glow with diffuse edges and a very slightly brighter center.  A double star is just off the NE edge.  Component B was apparently picked up about 50% of the time.  After looking at the magnitude (found to be mag 18.7 from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey) after the observing session, I'm not quite sure if I saw it.  I will take another look at it.

I scattered a few "eye candy" objects throughout the evening.  Some notables:

Whirlpool Galaxy M-51 - Wow!  the spiral arms showed a lot of structure, dark lanes, bright knots within the apiral arms.  It was a pleasing view.  This is a good indication on how the evening will go.

Veil Nebula - How could I go on without looking at this one?  With the "NPB" filter, I saw all kinds of detail.  Funny thing is that I thought I pulled out the Lumicon O-III filter and put it on, but found out much later that it was the NPB filter.

Ring Nebula M-57 - Picked up the central star fairly easily at 688x.  IC 1296 was fairly easily seen.

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