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Posts Tagged ‘Scutum’

09/18/2017 – Ephemeris – The constellation of the shield

September 18, 2017 1 comment

Ephemeris for Monday, September 18th. The Sun will rise at 7:25. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 21 minutes, setting at 7:46. The Moon, 2 days before new, will rise at 6:35 tomorrow morning.

In the evening sky, in the south after it gets dark can be seen part of the Milky Way. There is actually a constellation here located between Sagittarius the archer, which really looks like a teapot, below and Aquila the eagle above. It’s Scutum the shield of John Sobieski the Polish king who stopped the advance of the Turks at Kalenberg in 1683. Scutum is the only official constellation I know of which is related to a real person. The Polish half of me is very proud. However the stars here are so dim and embedded in the glow of the Milky Way as to be nearly impossible to discern. Scutum lies in one of the richest portions of the Milky Way, wonderful to scan with binoculars and telescopes for star clusters and nebulae or clouds of dust and gas.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Scutum Finder Chart

Scutum Finder Chart animation. For 9 p.m. September 18, 2017. Created using Stellarium and GIMP.  Click on image to enlarge.

DSOs in Scutum

Deep sky objects in Scutum and surrounding area. September 2017. Created using Stellarium.  Click on image to enlarge.

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09/03/2015 – Ephemeris – Jewels in the shield

September 3, 2015 Comments off

Ephemeris for Thursday, September 3rd.  The Sun will rise at 7:07.  It’ll be up for 13 hours and 9 minutes, setting at 8:16.   The Moon, 2 days before last quarter, will rise at 11:26 this evening.

The teapot pattern of stars that is the constellation of Sagittarius lies at the southern end of the Milky Way this evening. It appears that the Milky Way is steam rising from the spout.  The area above Sagittarius in the brightest part of the Milky Way is the dim constellation of Scutum the shield.  Don’t bother looking for the stars that make up the constellation; what’s important is the star clouds of the Milky Way.  Scan this area with binoculars or small telescope for star clusters and nebulae or clouds of gas.  In binoculars both clusters and nebulae will appear fuzzy, but a small telescope will tell most of them apart.  Even if you’ve never been able to find anything in your telescope, you’ll find something here.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Scutum

Scutum between Sagittarius below and Aquila above at 10 p.m. September 3, 2015. Created using Stellarium.

Star hopping in Scutum

How to find the three brightest deep sky wonders around Scutum by star hopping. Created using Stellarium, annotated by myself.

Star hopping is a method to find objects from familiar star patterns.  At the top my method to find M11, the wild duck cluster is to locate the three stars at the tail of Aquila the Eagle and follow them to M11.  M11 takes a little bigger telescope to resolve.  I remember having trouble resolving it is a 5″ telescope.  It looks like a triangular cluster with all the stars of the same dimness except one brighter one.

At the bottom of Scutum, I locate that distinctive 5 star group circled.  Directly west is M16, the Eagle Nebula and star cluster.  The star cluster is easy to spot, the nebula is hard.  The Hubble space telescope made the nebula famous in the 1990’s as the Pillars of Creation.

Below and west is M17, the Omega Nebula, or the Swan Nebula.  To me it looks like a swan swimming or a check mark of nebulosity.  The associated star cluster is much less noticeable.

Happy star hopping.

08/19/2014 -Ephemeris – Scutum’s place in history

August 19, 2014 Comments off

Ephemeris for Tuesday, August 19th.  The sun rises at 6:49.  It’ll be up for 13 hours and 51 minutes, setting at 8:41.   The moon, 2 days past last quarter, will rise at 2:26 tomorrow morning.

Yesterday we took a look at the wonders in the constellation of Scutum the shield above the Teapot of Sagittarius and below Aquila the eagle.  Scutum is the shield of John Sobieski the Polish king who stopped the advance of the Turks at Kalenberg in 1683. The Polish half of me is very proud.  Scutum is one of two official constellations which are related to a real person.  The other one is Coma Berenices, a hank of the Egyptian queen Berenice’s hair.  However the stars here are so dim and embedded in the glow of the Milky Way as to be nearly impossible to discern.  Scutum lies in one of the richest portions of the Milky Way, wonderful to scan with binoculars and telescopes for star clusters and nebulae or clouds of dust and gas.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Deep sky objects in Scutum & Sagittarius

Binocular and telescope deep sky objects in Scutum and Sagittarius. Created using Stellarium.

08/18/2014 – Ephemeris – Scanning the Milky Way in Scutum

August 18, 2014 Comments off

Ephemeris for Monday, August 18th.  The sun rises at 6:48.  It’ll be up for 13 hours and 54 minutes, setting at 8:43.   The moon, 1 day past last quarter, will rise at 1:37 tomorrow morning.

The teapot pattern of stars that is the constellation of Sagittarius lies at the southern end of the Milky Way this evening. It appears that the Milky Way is steam rising from the spout.  The area above Sagittarius in the brightest part of the Milky Way is the dim constellation of Scutum the shield.  Don’t bother looking for the stars that make up the constellation; what’s important is the star clouds of the Milky Way.  Scan this area with binoculars or small telescope for star clusters and nebulae or clouds of gas.  In binoculars both clusters and nebulae will appear fuzzy, but a small telescope will tell most of them apart.  Even if you’ve never been able to find anything in your telescope, use your lowest power and scan.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.

Addendum

The constellations Sagittarius and Scutum. Created using Stellarium.

The constellations Sagittarius and Scutum. Created using Stellarium.

08/08/2013 – Ephemeris – The wonders located in Scutum the shield

August 8, 2013 Comments off

Ephemeris for Thursday, August 8th.  The sun rises at 6:37.  It’ll be up for 14 hours and 20 minutes, setting at 8:58.   The moon, 2 days past new, will set at 9:28 this evening.

The teapot pattern of stars that is the constellation of Sagittarius lies at the southern end of the Milky Way this evening. It appears that the Milky Way is steam rising from the spout.  The area above Sagittarius in the brightest part of the Milky Way is the dim constellation of Scutum the shield.  Don’t bother looking for the stars that make up the constellation; what’s important is the star clouds of the Milky Way.  Scan this area with binoculars or small telescope for star clusters and nebulae or clouds of gas.  In binoculars both clusters and nebulae will appear fuzzy, but a small telescope will tell most of them apart.  Even if you’ve never been able to find anything in your telescope, put on the lowest power eyepiece you have and scan back and forth for these wonders.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Deep sky objects in Scutum & Sagittarius

Binocular and telescope deep sky objects in Scutum and Sagittarius. Created using Stellarium.

The symbols mean:

     Circle with embedded cross – Globular star cluster  (Very old compact star cluster)

     Open dotted circle – Open or galactic star cluster  (Young loose star cluster)

     Square – Nebula (Here emission nebulae.  In many cases with associated open clusters)

     Ellipse – Galaxy

 

08/16/2012 – Ephemeris – The constellation of Scutum

August 16, 2012 Comments off

Ephemeris for Thursday, August 16th.  The sun rises at 6:46.  It’ll be up for 13 hours and 58 minutes, setting at 8:45.   The moon, 1 day before new, will rise at 6:53 tomorrow morning.  | In the evening sky, in the south after it gets dark can be seen part of the Milky Way.  There is actually a constellation here located between Sagittarius the archer, which really looks like a teapot, below and Aquila the eagle above.  It’s Scutum the shield of John Sobieski the Polish king who stopped the advance of the Turks at Kalenberg in 1683.  Scutum is the only official constellation I know of which is related to a real person.  The Polish half of me is very proud.  However the stars here are so dim and embedded in the glow of the Milky Way as to be nearly impossible to discern.  Scutum lies in one of the richest portions of the Milky Way, wonderful to scan with binoculars and telescopes for star clusters and nebulae or clouds of dust and gas.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.

Addendum

The constellations Sagittarius and Scutum. Created using Stellarium.

The constellations Sagittarius and Scutum. Created using Stellarium.

08/23/11 – Ephemeris – The wonders found in the constellation Scutum

August 23, 2011 Comments off

Tuesday, August 23rd.  The sun rises at 6:54.  It’ll be up for 13 hours and 41 minutes, setting at 8:35.   The moon, 2 days past last quarter, will rise at 1:45 tomorrow morning.

The teapot pattern of stars that is the constellation of Sagittarius lies at the southern end of the Milky Way this evening. It appears that the Milky Way is steam rising from the spout.  The area above Sagittarius in the brightest part of the Milky Way is the dim constellation of Scutum the shield.  Don’t bother looking for the stars that make up the constellation; what’s important is the star clouds of the Milky Way.  Scan this area with binoculars or small telescope for star clusters and nebulae or clouds of gas.  In binoculars both clusters and nebulae will appear fuzzy, but a small telescope will tell most of them apart.  Even if you’ve never been able to find anything in your telescope, put on the lowest power eyepiece you have and scan back and forth for these wonders.

* Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.

Addendum

The constellations Sagittarius and Scutum. Created using Stellarium.

The constellations Sagittarius and Scutum. Created using Stellarium.