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Extra galactic delights

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#1 maroubra_boy

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 04:19 AM

January! January was the last time I did a DSO sketch!

Finally the drought broke on Sunday morning with two. Both of extra galactic treasures.

First was the nebula and open cluster complex NGC 346 in the SMC (Small Magellanic Cloud). I’ve been wanting to sketch this system since my first look at it. For being so far away, it is very bright, so the member stars of the cluster must be very big to be so bright.

At first glance, the nebula has an appearance of a kidney. The top lobe being immediately brighter as it houses the cluster. There is a dark lane that separates the cluster from the crest of the lobe. This lane is a band of dust that is more detailed in photographs.

The surroundings of 346 are spectacular too. The overall background is bright and somewhat ‘nebulous’ due to the mottling from the multitude of unseen stars within the SMC. Adding to the spectacular collection of DSOs in this area is another bright open cluster and nebula complex, NGC 371, just to the north of 346. The cluster is larger in size than 346, and the nebulosity more tenuous, so I suspect that 371 is older and therefore the cluster’s members have spread apart from each other and the gas and dust of the nebula dispersed – something like the Pleiades.

Just to the east of 346 was a softly glowing ball, which could be another open cluster, IC 1611.

Object: NGC 346, NGC 371 and IC 1611
Scope: 17.5” f/4.5 push-pull dob
Gear: 13mm modified Baader Hyperion, 154X, +OIII filter
Location: Katoomba Airfield, Oz
Date: 3rd November, 2013
Media: White soft pastel and charcoal on A4 size black paper.
Duration: 1.5 hrs

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#2 maroubra_boy

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 04:21 AM

The second sketch of NGC 1365 was a delight to do. From my location, it goes straight overhead. As the sketch progressed, the leading edge of the northern arm (lower arm in sketch) seemed brighter than the leading edge of the southern arm. As more time transpired, I was surprised to notice so many more foreground stars in the area than first inspection reveals.

Object: NGC 1365
Scope: 17.5” f/4.5 push-pull dob
Gear: 13mm modified Baader Hyperion, 154X
Location: Katoomba Airfield, Oz
Date: 3rd November 2013
Media: White soft pastel and charcoal on A4 black paper
Duration: 30min

I hope you enjoy both sketches.

Alex.

Attached Files



#3 Asbytec

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 04:49 AM

Man, I especially love NGC 1365. That's a sweet galaxy. I dunno, though, re-looking at NGC 346 in the SMC, it's beautiful, too. Nice sketches, must have been a great southern sky night with the Magellanic Clouds well above the horizon.

#4 frank5817

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 09:46 AM

Alex,

Both outstanding sketches. It is remarkable how much there is to look at in the first sketch. The NGC 346 region looks treasure rich. The second sketch of the barred spiral N 1365
is outstanding too.
Thanks for posting your sketches here. You still have the fine touch, Scott Mellish would be smiling broadly at these.

Frank :)

#5 JeanB

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 10:02 AM

Alex,

these are amazingly detailed and beautiful sketches. Thanks for the report too.

Jean

#6 Jef De Wit

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 01:31 PM

Alex, again beautiful sketches :applause:

#7 maroubra_boy

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Posted 05 November 2013 - 03:30 AM

Thank you gentlemen. I appreciate the kind words.

Reflecting on the sketch of NGC 346, I'd like to revisit it but this time increasing the magnification even more. I've got a feeling I could suck out even more detail from it. As the individual star members are visible at 154X, I'm sure it can take more magnification.

#8 niteskystargazer

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Posted 05 November 2013 - 05:10 PM

Alex,
Very good sketches of NGC 346, NGC 371 & NGC 1365 :).

CS,KLU,

:thanx:,

Tom

#9 Andrev

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Posted 05 November 2013 - 06:50 PM

Oh boy oh boy Alex.

That is so excellent. Like looking at your scope, really impressive sketches. I'm so pleased to see the SMC for the first time throught a scope. Here in northern hemisphere its something totally unknow for us.

WOW, impressive. Must be so nice to show to public. Is it easily visible to the naked eye ? What's his magnitude ?

Andre.


Andre.

#10 Achernar

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Posted 05 November 2013 - 11:56 PM

While this galaxy technically gets high enough to be observed from the Gulf Coast, it would never look that good even through my 15-inch due to the murkiness near the horizon and the light pollution. That is a very nice sketch of NGC-1365.

Taras

#11 maroubra_boy

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 04:13 AM

Andre, the SMC from my home used to be regularly visible to the naked eye. Today, because of light pollution, it is rarely visible naked eye. It's total magnitude is 2.7, but because it is so large (5deg angular size) it is actually dim. I'm going to see if I can capture it on my video rig from home soon. It might be the only way for the general public to get to view it under urban skies. A real shame, really.

Taras, we have the LMC and the SMC, but you have the Andromeda spiral! Good enough conditions to see it well are rare as it is never more than 11deg above the horizon for me.

#12 kenrenard

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 10:43 AM

Alex,
Very fine work.

Ken

#13 Ed D

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 10:17 AM

Alex, your talents are amazing. I always enjoy your works of art.

Ed D

#14 Andrev

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 02:09 PM

Thanks Alex. That must be really cool to see.

I'm pretty sure Andromeda spiral is not appealing as SMC and LMC.

Andre

#15 Aperturefever

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 06:37 PM

Spot-on as usual, Alex. Well done. (Magellanic)cloudy summer nights make for serious fun - Matti Morel was kind enough to send me a bunch of his charts and hopefully I can dive in too!






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