Jump to content


Photo

Has anyone seen Stephen's Quintet?

  • Please log in to reply
51 replies to this topic

#1 Philler

Philler

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 512
  • Joined: 15 Jul 2013
  • Loc: Kansas, USA

Posted 17 September 2013 - 01:13 PM

I didn't look through all the past threads and I am sure this has been posted before.
I have tried time and again from some pretty decent dark skies and no luck--not even a hint of Stephen's Quintet in my 10" reflector. I have tried different powers. I should have stayed up very late at the TSP and tried, but it seemed right on que we would get clouded out about 10 or 11 each night. Someone said a couple of shots of Jack D. actually helps your averted vision. (Just kidding) :p

#2 John_G

John_G

    Messenger

  • -----
  • Posts: 474
  • Joined: 18 Jan 2010

Posted 17 September 2013 - 02:16 PM

I've seen it with my 200mm from a Bortle 3 location on a night with exceptionally good seeing conditions. I only really saw NGC 7320 with averted vision but it definitely had an elongated and broad shape to it. This was with my ES 6.7mm at 149x.

#3 hbanich

hbanich

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1113
  • Joined: 17 Jun 2005
  • Loc: Portland, Oregon

Posted 17 September 2013 - 02:50 PM

I know people who have seen Stephan's Quintet with an 8 inch scope from a true dark sky site (Oregon Star Party). They described it as seeing a "faint, lumpy smudge" - they couldn't resolve each galaxy but saw them together. So keep at it even if you can't observe under pristine skies, because sometimes an exceptionally transparent sky with mild light pollution is almost as good.

#4 uwe_glahn

uwe_glahn

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 101
  • Joined: 05 Mar 2006
  • Loc: Germany

Posted 17 September 2013 - 03:03 PM

I was very surprised when I tried the group a couple years ago with my small 4" reflector. I only knew the group through a 8" as pretty tough but it also works with 4". The key is 1. to know exactly where the group is and 2. magnification. My best view with the 4" was with 88x (1,1mm AP) and I could separate two faint spots - HCG 92a (NGC 7320) and HCG 92b/d (NGC 7318a/b).

#5 rinalmj

rinalmj

    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 319
  • Joined: 23 Nov 2009
  • Loc: Saxonburg, PA

Posted 17 September 2013 - 03:40 PM

I saw it a couple weeks ago from a dark site (green zone) with a 12" reflector. I didn't have a good chart or photograph, so I'm not sure which members I saw, but I was able to see 3 fairly easily and I believe I saw a 4th.

#6 blb

blb

    Aurora

  • -----
  • Posts: 4509
  • Joined: 25 Nov 2005
  • Loc: Piedmont NC

Posted 17 September 2013 - 04:14 PM

I have seen it with my 10-inch dob from the mountains of western North Carolina. A good way to judge weather or not you can see Stephen's Quintet, is to observe the galaxy NGC 7331. This is a large bright galaxy with several companion galaxies. If you can see the companion galaxies of NGC 7331, then it is a good night to observe Stephen's Quintet. The last time I looked at Stephen's Quintet, I could easily see three of these faint galaxies, with a fourth comming in and out of view. Stephen's Quintet is located only about 45 minutes south of NGC 7331 so it is easy to pan south of NGC 7331 to find Stephen's Quintet. With the 10-inch dob Stephen's Quintet looks very much like Howard's description, a "faint, lumpy smudge" Without a chart, I am not sure which ones I saw but I could make out three brighter lumps in the gray smudge. So if you can see NGC 7331's companion galaxies go for Stephen's Quintet by panning south a field-of-view or two, depending on what your eyepieces field-of-view is, and you will be able to see this little cluster of galaxies too. ;)

#7 RGM

RGM

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 948
  • Joined: 15 Sep 2003
  • Loc: Burks Falls, Ontario, Canada

Posted 17 September 2013 - 05:57 PM

As already stated, it/they are just a smudge in smaller scopes. Dark skies also help a lot. I observe from a blue zone. I found it first with my C8 and memorized the star field. Knowing exactly where to look, and under very good CSC conditions, I viewed a very small smudge with my Tak FS78. A couple of times a year I try it, and this thread has reminded me to try again the next no moon cycle.

#8 JimMo

JimMo

    I'd Rather Do It Myself

  • *****
  • Posts: 5151
  • Joined: 08 Jan 2007
  • Loc: Under the SE Michigan lightdome

Posted 17 September 2013 - 06:03 PM

I saw it from the Oki-Tex Star Party in my 14.5" dob. Like Uwe said it takes magnification. It was fuzzy but distinct with three galaxies and hints at the two others IIRC. A neighbor with a 25" dob was kind enough to show it it me in his scope to verify it, all five galaxies at that aperture. I've tried here at home and recently up in Gladwin under dark(er) skies, I saw the brightest one and hints at two more since I knew where to look.

#9 aatt

aatt

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 528
  • Joined: 26 Jul 2012
  • Loc: CT

Posted 17 September 2013 - 07:18 PM

I have seen 4 with the 5th being a possible threshold observation with a 9mm ES100 using an F4.5 -17.5 inch dob.I had an experienced "SQ" person with me-I have not found it myself yet, but it is on my list.I am hoping to nail it with my 15" on my next dark sky excursion. I will try it from my orange zone, but I have little hope of seeing all 5 from my backyard.

#10 demiles

demiles

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 544
  • Joined: 07 Nov 2006

Posted 17 September 2013 - 07:29 PM

I was able to see all five at 350x in my 15in. at BFSP just recently.

#11 Philler

Philler

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 512
  • Joined: 15 Jul 2013
  • Loc: Kansas, USA

Posted 17 September 2013 - 07:54 PM

Thanks, I have a pretty good DS site, (don't know these zone classification systems everyone seems to use.) But I will try to take your advise and tips on the Quintet.
I have collected more EPs than I need. I have mostly Meades and Televues and a Televue 1.8 Barlow. l can certainly go well over 150x to 200x something. I even have an old 8mm RKE that I might try that I haven't used in many years that would definately give over 200x with the Barlow, but that's tops that I have now for my 10" Dob. f/4.5, I'll see what happens. I have a feeling though that when I do I will spot them it will be at something like 90x to 150x. I might even try this Deep Sky LP filter, who knows maybe that will do the trick.

#12 Cathal

Cathal

    Explorer 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 62
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2009
  • Loc: Ireland, land of mist and cloud..

Posted 17 September 2013 - 08:37 PM

I saw Stephan's Quintet in a 222mm reflector with a slightly astigmatic primary, and a 18mm kellner eyepiece nigh on 20 years ago. IIRC I spotted 4 of the 5 in the group. Directions from a Sky&Telescope deep sky article on where to find it.

#13 kfiscus

kfiscus

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2239
  • Joined: 09 Jul 2012
  • Loc: Albert Lea, MN, USA

Posted 17 September 2013 - 09:57 PM

I've seen them in my 10" &12". You don't need super high power to see them. I think they were best in my 7mm. Just get NGC 7331 and follow the correct tip toward the Quintet. They're of different sizes, shapes, and brightnesses. Time your attempt for a steady, clear night when they're near the meridian. Know that you will succeed.

#14 Sasa

Sasa

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 852
  • Joined: 03 Nov 2010
  • Loc: Ricany, Czech Republic

Posted 18 September 2013 - 02:21 AM

Uwe, I had similar experience recently with my 110mm refractor.

Philler, I was trying to spot in my 110mm refractor the galaxies from the quintet for about one year. The thing is, you need to know exactly where to look (at least in small refractor, 10" telescope should be more relaxing). Uranometria 2000.0 was not enough. But once I brought to my observatory an inverted image of the NGC7331 area, I was able to see two members of the group (the same as Uwe).

#15 Jim Curry

Jim Curry

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1689
  • Joined: 29 Oct 2007
  • Loc: STL

Posted 18 September 2013 - 02:59 PM

I bagged the group a few years ago with my 140 refractor. Green skies, exceptionally transparent after a hurricane cleared the summer haze out of New England. I too used an inverted map and walked my eye down star by star from 7331. If memory serves I saw 3 clumps, not all 5. The following weekend, same sky conditions I looked at the group in our club 16" and each galaxy was defined with a bright core. Very cool.

Jim

#16 Achernar

Achernar

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 9125
  • Joined: 25 Feb 2006
  • Loc: Mobile, Alabama, USA

Posted 18 September 2013 - 09:08 PM

Stephan's Quintet is certain visible through a 10-inch from a reasonably dark site, but it will be much fainter than nearby NGC-7331. Blb's right, if you cannot see the companions to NGC-7331, don't bother looking for Stephan's Quintet. If they are visible, Stephan's Quintet will appear and you should see the three brightest galaxies straight away and hints of the other two. Dark skies will be back in a week, try looking for it again if the skies are transparent. The drawing below I made with a 10-inch from the Okie-Tex star party in 2006, since then I have seen it with the same telescope through the quite poor skies of coastal Alabama. It's quite easy through a 15-inch to see all five of the members.

Taras

Attached Files



#17 ensign

ensign

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 812
  • Joined: 16 Dec 2008
  • Loc: Southwestern Ontario

Posted 19 September 2013 - 11:00 AM

Piece of cake from my light-polluted back yard with a 4.3 inch scope and a Mallincam.

Yes, I know. I didn't really **see** it. :grin:

#18 blb

blb

    Aurora

  • -----
  • Posts: 4509
  • Joined: 25 Nov 2005
  • Loc: Piedmont NC

Posted 19 September 2013 - 11:19 AM

Piece of cake from my light-polluted back yard with a 4.3 inch scope and a Mallincam.

Yes, I know. I didn't really **see** it. :grin:

So what did it look like on your monitor? How many of the galaxies did you see? Etc., etc., etc.

#19 ensign

ensign

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 812
  • Joined: 16 Dec 2008
  • Loc: Southwestern Ontario

Posted 19 September 2013 - 03:33 PM

Piece of cake from my light-polluted back yard with a 4.3 inch scope and a Mallincam.

Yes, I know. I didn't really **see** it. :grin:

So what did it look like on your monitor? How many of the galaxies did you see? Etc., etc., etc.


Buddy, I made that observation a year or two ago, so I need to repeat the observation to be able to answer with complete accuracy. At the time I was experimenting with a variety of light pollution filters, so I recall that the image was monochromatic, but stood out very clearly on the monitor. I also recall (and I don't really completely trust memories that old) that I was able to see all five members of the quintet and that I was able to observe the ovals of the galaxies with brightening towards the centers.

#20 hokkaido53

hokkaido53

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 274
  • Joined: 07 May 2012
  • Loc: New Mexico

Posted 20 September 2013 - 09:23 PM

I don't think I've ever seen all five members of the Quintet at once. With averted vision, I could see 4 in a 12.5" reflector, with the 5th galaxy fading in and out. This was at Cherry Springs State Park. I also saw the 3 brighter galaxies once in a suburban area outside Baltimore.

The transparency has to be good and the Quintet needs to be about 60 degrees in altitude, in my opinion.

Roy

#21 Feidb

Feidb

    Surveyor 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 1763
  • Joined: 09 Oct 2009
  • Loc: Nevada

Posted 21 September 2013 - 10:36 PM

I routinely see all 5 in my 16-inch, but the skies have to be dark to see it at all. Buddy is right. If you can first find NGC-7331 and then see any of its companions, then swing a little to the southwest? or is it southeast? and you'll find that little fuzzy lump. In a smaller scope, you'll have a challenge separating them into individual galaxies but in mine it's pretty easy, usually, depending on transparency and darkness.

In my 18mm 82 degree eyepiece (102X), I can pick up NGC-7331, all of it's companions and the quintet in the same field of view.

#22 ManuelJ

ManuelJ

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 777
  • Joined: 19 Dec 2005
  • Loc: Madrid, Spain

Posted 25 September 2013 - 06:27 AM

I was very surprised when I tried the group a couple years ago with my small 4" reflector. I only knew the group through a 8" as pretty tough but it also works with 4". The key is 1. to know exactly where the group is and 2. magnification. My best view with the 4" was with 88x (1,1mm AP) and I could separate two faint spots - HCG 92a (NGC 7320) and HCG 92b/d (NGC 7318a/b).


You are not alone, I've also observed them with 4 inches. Anyone with 3 inch? :)

#23 azure1961p

azure1961p

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 10430
  • Joined: 17 Jan 2009
  • Loc: USA

Posted 25 September 2013 - 07:37 AM

I failed with an 8" under better than 6v sky's but I am confident had I better reference for exact position it would have shown. I've seen similarly faint galaxies elsewhere but I knew with certainty where to look. General scanning in and about the area in a general way yielded nothing.

Pete

#24 Starman1

Starman1

    Vendor (EyepiecesEtc.com)

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 23135
  • Joined: 23 Jun 2003
  • Loc: Los Angeles

Posted 26 September 2013 - 03:19 PM

I didn't look through all the past threads and I am sure this has been posted before.
I have tried time and again from some pretty decent dark skies and no luck--not even a hint of Stephen's Quintet in my 10" reflector. I have tried different powers. I should have stayed up very late at the TSP and tried, but it seemed right on que we would get clouded out about 10 or 11 each night. Someone said a couple of shots of Jack D. actually helps your averted vision. (Just kidding) :p

Stephan's Quintet (actually 6 galaxies here) is very near NGC7331, one of the brightest and largest galaxies in Pegasus. If you can't see 7331, don't even bother to try for Stephan's Quintet.
But if you can see one or two of the 4 companions to 7331 (together they form the "Deerlick Group"), then only an eyepiece field (or less) away from 7331 lies Stephan's Quintet.
A magnification of 70-100X will let you know it's there (small smudges right next to each other), but 150-200X is a better view (and higher if the darkness of your skies allows it).
I attach a field 42' wide, with NGC7331 in the upper left and Stephan's Quintet in the lower right.

Attached Files



#25 Starman1

Starman1

    Vendor (EyepiecesEtc.com)

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 23135
  • Joined: 23 Jun 2003
  • Loc: Los Angeles

Posted 26 September 2013 - 03:20 PM

and here is a finder chart for all 6. This is a 20' field.
Magnitudes are:
7317--13.6
7318A--14.3
7318B--13.9
7319--13.1
7320--13.2
7320C--16.7
Don't feel bad if 7320C isn't visible, and don't feel bad if 7318A&B aren't seen as 2 separate galaxies.
Even under pristine skies (>mag.7), 7320C was a "limit" observation for my 12.5".

Attached Files








Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics