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Dumbbell nebula

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#1 tyler0207

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 10:36 PM

Hello all,

I have a 8in Orion DOB. I live in Baltimore, md. My light pollution is around 4400 on the light pollution map. Tonight using Vega as my starting point to try to find the dumbbell nebula with no luck. Will I be able to see this or am I too polluted? Any tips greatly appreciated. Thanks
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#2 Bob4BVM

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 11:03 PM

Hello all,

I have a 8in Orion DOB. I live in Baltimore, md. My light pollution is around 4400 on the light pollution map. Tonight using Vega as my starting point to try to find the dumbbell nebula with no luck. Will I be able to see this or am I too polluted? Any tips greatly appreciated. Thanks

Welcome to CN !

 

If you can get into a spot with no direct street light interference, I think you have a chance. My std starhop for M27 is to start at Albeiro and drop down about one fist to M27.  If you have one, an O-III filter helps immensely on this nebula !  Of course a drive to darker skies is the best LP 'filter' there is...

CS

Bob


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#3 Adun

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Posted 22 September 2019 - 11:13 PM

With an 114mm reflector from Bortle 8 skies, M27 was only visible when I added an UHC filter.

 

So, either get the 8" dob away from light pollution, or get a nice UHC filter


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#4 havasman

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 12:22 AM

I'm in the white zone under the Dallas lightdome and from my driveway I can see M27 in my XT10i w/o a filter. It looks much better with a good narrowband UHC filter in place. It also shows up in the 115mm refractor on a night with better transparency and is very much better at that aperture with a UHC. But I have seen it many times.

 

Vega's not a bad starting point if you can also see Alberio as they are roughly in-line with M27 being about 1/2 as far from Alberio as Alberio is from Vega. Plus, there's a pretty good field between Alberio & M27 that can be navigated via star hop.

 

Keep after it. It's very interesting and you will find it in your 8". It's always easier to find and see something you've seen before.


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#5 kksmith

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 01:10 PM

This is where a nice pair of binoculars to compliment your telescope come in - finding the target zone before opening up with big guns.

 

Start your hunt closer. Approximately 5° - 6° below Albireo/B Cygnus is a "M" shaped asterism in Vulpecula. By "below", I mean the side of Cygnus  opposite Vega. The two top point stars of the "M" are doubles. At the star that makes the bottom middle point of the "M" lies M27/The Dumbell. If you have this bottom point star in the center of your eyepiece - The Dumbell is also in your field of view. This is how I first found it 40 something years ago as a teenager with a 3" reflector...and how I still quickly find it. 

 

The "M" easily fits in most finder fov.

 

Ken


Edited by kksmith, 23 September 2019 - 01:24 PM.

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#6 Chesterguy1

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Posted 23 September 2019 - 08:37 PM

This is where a nice pair of binoculars to compliment your telescope come in - finding the target zone before opening up with big guns...
 
The "M" easily fits in most finder fov.
 
Ken


If you are using, say 10 x 50 binoculars, it might work as well with a 9 x 50 finderscope. I suppose if your LP is really bad, it won’t show up in either. I can easily find it with my 90mm refractor, but I have less LP.

Chesterguy
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#7 kksmith

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 12:22 AM

If you are using, say 10 x 50 binoculars, it might work as well with a 9 x 50 finderscope. I suppose if your LP is really bad, it won’t show up in either. I can easily find it with my 90mm refractor, but I have less LP.

Chesterguy

It does work well with a 9x50 finder, which is what I have mounted - the whole "M" fits in its field of view. But I think using binoculars to find the asterism for the first time is easier than trying to slew the finder/telescope around to hunt for it.

 

Ken


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#8 desertstars

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 07:55 AM

Second the investment in a filter. I use the Orion UltraBlock rendition here in Tucson, and it makes a significant difference when observing such objects. It doesn't hurt that there's less light pollution here than you might expect from a city this size, buy my suburban skies are nowhere near what you'd call dark.

 

By the way, investment in such a filter will also serve you well under truly dark skies. I see another level of improvement using that filter out away from city lights.



#9 Cames

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 12:11 PM

Your dob will be perfect for the Dumbbell.  First looks are best attempted when the Moon is near or below the horizon.

 

A 10X50 binocular and the Sky & Telescope Pocket Sky Atlas will be indispensable in your quest.  They will help you in many future searches as well.

 

The celestial landmark you want is the constellation, Saggita (the arrow) on Chart 64. It's not far from Albireo.  Study the little constellation with binoculars until you get a feel for the direction of the arrow in the sky. The Dumbbell isn't far from the tip of the arrow. You can probably almost see it with the 10X50 if you take take care to rest your arms on structure in order to steady the bino.  I believe that it's possible to have the tip of the 'arrow' and the Dumbbell in the same field of view of a 10X50.

 

The Dumbbell is a good choice for honing your deep sky skills.  It's position now is very favorable.  It has an asterism that almost points directly at it. It is unmistakable once you find it.  Be ready for the unexpected, though. It won't look exactly like the photographs of M27 that we've all seen.  It's one of my favorites. Best wishes for your astronomy adventures.

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C


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#10 Bill Geertsen

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Posted 25 September 2019 - 05:19 PM

To: tyler0207:

 

Join the Harford County Astronomical Society (HCAS). They have access to a couple of dark sites, an observatory, lots of equipment and uncountable years of experience. Aside from those things, they are good people and schedule many activities.

 

BG



#11 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 26 September 2019 - 12:06 PM

Finding M27 under light polluted skies:

 

I start from the three bright stars in Aquila, Alshain at magnitude 3.7, Altair at magnitude 0.9, Tarazed at magnitude 2.7

 

These roughly point at Sagitta so using a magnifying finder, I move towards Sagitta until I find the distinctive bright pairs. If I end up on the coat hanger, I've gone too far.

 

While I'm in Sagitta I'll look M71.  Delta and Zeta Sagitti, two bright stars in the finder, point directly at M27, about 4.3 degrees from Zeta.

 

Jon



#12 vdog

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Posted 26 September 2019 - 01:10 PM

My Dumbbell Nebula "hack":

 

The constellation Cygnus contains an asterism some call "the Northern Cross."  If you run this through Google Images, you'll get some good illustrations of it.  Now, imagine this cross surrounded by a rectangle that it divides into four quadrants.  Go the southeastern corner of this rectangle with your widest angle eyepiece (and preferably a nebula filter) and it should be in the FOV.


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#13 Tony Flanders

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Posted 26 September 2019 - 01:12 PM

I have a 8in Orion DOB. I live in Baltimore, md. My light pollution is around 4400 on the light pollution map.


Just out of curiosity, which light-pollution map are you referring to, and what does "4400" mean? I have never seen light pollution expressed that way before.

Note also that maps only give you a guess about skyglow, which is indeed an important component of light pollution. But for many or most urban observers, direct glare from streetlights and suchlike is a bigger problem than skyglow.

Tonight using Vega as my starting point to try to find the dumbbell nebula with no luck. Will I be able to see this or am I too polluted? Any tips greatly appreciated. Thanks


It's a long, long way from Vega to M27! I'm used to long, tedious star-hops, but that's a whole lot farther than I would choose to go! If you were attempting to find M27 just by sweeping from Vega rather than star-hopping -- forgetaboutit. It would require a miracle.

If you absolutely need to start from a 1st-magnitude star, Altair is way closer to M27 than Vega is.

You might be interested in my discussion of navigating to M27 in my Urban/Suburban Messier Guide. Note that I assume that you will be able to see Albireo -- which I always can at any site without direct glare, assuming that the sky is reasonably clear. But Albireo is pretty subtle from a place like midtown Manhattan, even if you can get away from the lights.

As for actually seeing M27 once you've located it, that should be relatively easy. It is by far the brightest planetary nebula in the sky.
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#14 whizbang

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Posted 26 September 2019 - 01:45 PM

lightpollutionmap.info has a titled artif.bright.  I am guessing that is the line referred to.

 

4400 is a lot.  My artif bright is 1920 and I have a hard time finding the dumbell, and I know where it is.  Of course, here in the NW, we often have high altitude haze wipe out our skies too.



#15 MikeTelescope

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Posted 26 September 2019 - 02:08 PM

I can see the Dumbbell nebula in my Bortle 7 skies with an 8" Dob, its 9x50 finder, and 10x50 binoculars.  

 

Below is the starhop I use.  Find the summer triangle.  Find Altair.  Find Albireo.  About midway between those is the feather of Sagitta the arrow, two stars.  The arrow has 4 nodes from feather to tip.  Two stars, another two stars, one star, and one star.  Hop down to the tip of the arrow.  Make a right turn and go to the first bright star, a little longer than your last hop in Sagitta.  Hop up one more time to a brighter star, about half the distance of the previous hop.  The Dumbbell nebula is very close to this final bright star.  In binoculars or a 9x50 finder, it will look like a dim star that doesn't want to focus.  At ~80x, I can see the dumbell/applecore shape fairly easily in my urban skies.  If I add a narrowband filter, it pops out like it does under Bortle 4 skies without a filter.      

 

While doing this hop, check out Albireo, a colorful double, and M71, a globular cluster in the middle of Sagitta the arrow.  
 

Attached Thumbnails

  • m27_zoomout.JPG
  • m27_zoomin.JPG

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#16 airbleeder

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Posted 27 September 2019 - 04:02 PM

My Dumbbell Nebula "hack":

 

The constellation Cygnus contains an asterism some call "the Northern Cross."  If you run this through Google Images, you'll get some good illustrations of it.  Now, imagine this cross surrounded by a rectangle that it divides into four quadrants.  Go the southeastern corner of this rectangle with your widest angle eyepiece (and preferably a nebula filter) and it should be in the FOV.

   Last night I happened to think of your post just before going to m27 with my AR102 and 24mm 68* ep. I aimed my telrad, looked into the ep and there was the Dumbell at about 8 o'clock. Quick n Easy.


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#17 Tony Flanders

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Posted 28 September 2019 - 08:50 AM

lightpollutionmap.info has a titled artif.bright.  I am guessing that is the line referred to.


Yikes -- I despise lightpollutionmap.info! It throws so many monkey wrenches into an already confusing situation. It's scientifically defensible to measure light pollution in microcandellas per square meter, but it's certainly not a concept widely used in the amateur-astronomy community.

Anyway, poking around on said map, 4400 μcd/m**2 seems pretty typical for the inner suburbs of a major U.S. city. Once located, M27 should be quite easy to see through an 8-inch Dob in such skies -- barring direct glare from streetlights or suchlike.


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#18 REC

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Posted 28 September 2019 - 10:56 AM

Just out of curiosity, which light-pollution map are you referring to, and what does "4400" mean? I have never seen light pollution expressed that way before.

Note also that maps only give you a guess about skyglow, which is indeed an important component of light pollution. But for many or most urban observers, direct glare from streetlights and suchlike is a bigger problem than skyglow.


It's a long, long way from Vega to M27! I'm used to long, tedious star-hops, but that's a whole lot farther than I would choose to go! If you were attempting to find M27 just by sweeping from Vega rather than star-hopping -- forgetaboutit. It would require a miracle.

If you absolutely need to start from a 1st-magnitude star, Altair is way closer to M27 than Vega is.

You might be interested in my discussion of navigating to M27 in my Urban/Suburban Messier Guide. Note that I assume that you will be able to see Albireo -- which I always can at any site without direct glare, assuming that the sky is reasonably clear. But Albireo is pretty subtle from a place like midtown Manhattan, even if you can get away from the lights.

As for actually seeing M27 once you've located it, that should be relatively easy. It is by far the brightest planetary nebula in the sky.

FYI, bookmark Tony's guide, very helpful. Also he has another chart show the most popular objects in a Suburban skies..



#19 kksmith

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Posted 28 September 2019 - 02:11 PM

I can see the Dumbbell nebula in my Bortle 7 skies with an 8" Dob, its 9x50 finder, and 10x50 binoculars.  

 

Below is the starhop I use.  Find the summer triangle.  Find Altair.  Find Albireo.  About midway between those is the feather of Sagitta the arrow, two stars.  The arrow has 4 nodes from feather to tip.  Two stars, another two stars, one star, and one star.  Hop down to the tip of the arrow.  Make a right turn and go to the first bright star, a little longer than your last hop in Sagitta.  Hop up one more time to a brighter star, about half the distance of the previous hop.  The Dumbbell nebula is very close to this final bright star.  In binoculars or a 9x50 finder, it will look like a dim star that doesn't want to focus.  At ~80x, I can see the dumbell/applecore shape fairly easily in my urban skies.  If I add a narrowband filter, it pops out like it does under Bortle 4 skies without a filter.      

 

While doing this hop, check out Albireo, a colorful double, and M71, a globular cluster in the middle of Sagitta the arrow.  
 

That's a painful way to get to something at the bottom of an "M"! 

 

Ken


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#20 MikeTelescope

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Posted 28 September 2019 - 02:52 PM

That's a painful way to get to something at the bottom of an "M"! 

 

Ken

Didn't your suggestion to the OP require first spending time with binoculars?


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#21 kksmith

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Posted 28 September 2019 - 05:05 PM

Didn't your suggestion to the OP require first spending time with binoculars?

Yes I did. Talking about the hopping around. I figured if I could find the "M" in a matter of minutes, years ago , then anybody steps above me could quicker. But there many ways to skin a cat, so to each his own.

 

Ken



#22 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 02 October 2019 - 02:14 PM

I can see the Dumbbell nebula in my Bortle 7 skies with an 8" Dob, its 9x50 finder, and 10x50 binoculars.  

 

Below is the starhop I use.  Find the summer triangle.  Find Altair.  Find Albireo.  About midway between those is the feather of Sagitta the arrow, two stars.  The arrow has 4 nodes from feather to tip.  Two stars, another two stars, one star, and one star.  Hop down to the tip of the arrow.  Make a right turn and go to the first bright star, a little longer than your last hop in Sagitta.  Hop up one more time to a brighter star, about half the distance of the previous hop.  The Dumbbell nebula is very close to this final bright star.  In binoculars or a 9x50 finder, it will look like a dim star that doesn't want to focus.  At ~80x, I can see the dumbell/applecore shape fairly easily in my urban skies.  If I add a narrowband filter, it pops out like it does under Bortle 4 skies without a filter.      

 

While doing this hop, check out Albireo, a colorful double, and M71, a globular cluster in the middle of Sagitta the arrow.  
 

M27 lies about 2 degrees north of the red giant Gamma Sagittae, the tip of the arrow.  The above is the method I usually use if I'm star-hopping to M27.

https://www.astronom...-facts-sagitta/

M71 lies to the southwest of Gamma and is a good target under dark skies.

 

Dave Mitsky



#23 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 02 October 2019 - 02:51 PM

Here's a hand-held iPhone shot of M27 that I took through Al Nagler's TNVC night vision device and John Vogt's 32" Dob during the Black Forest Star Party last week.

 

Dave Mitsky

Attached Thumbnails

  • 2019 BFSP IMG_1510 M27 Processed Rotated FB.jpg

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#24 REC

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Posted 03 October 2019 - 12:26 PM

Do you use Stellarium, if not download the free program. A big help for finding things in YOUR sky!




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