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Take On the Virgo Cluster Challenge!

Beginner Binoculars Charts Dob DSO Observing
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#1 SNH

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Posted 25 February 2021 - 11:00 PM

Here it is, short and sweet: I have never had a great grasp on what exactly constitutes the Virgo Cluster due to it always being mentioned in the same sentence as other nearby clusters, subclusters, and the Virgo Supercluster. So I've been doing a little research to help myself understand it's extent and I now understand this: Virtually every galaxy I've seen anywhere near the direction of the constellations Vir/Leo/Com is part of the Virgo (Local) Supercluster, but I haven't actually seen that many that are part of just the Virgo Cluster itself!

 

So here is a link to something I threw together to highlight my findings: The Virgo I Galaxy Cluster PDF

I lay out the table twice - once in order of brightness (which is my favorite) and once in order of RA. I hope you all enjoy it and let me know if you have any thoughts about things I should add!

 

 

Scott


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#2 dclt

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 12:10 AM

The link shows up blank, Scott, unfortunately.

#3 astro rocketeer

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 12:40 AM

The report is awesome!! Thank you!! Very helpful guide. Really love the picture and appreciate the notes! Thank you for sharing



#4 Dobserver

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 12:41 AM

Works for me! Very cool, thank you. I can't wait to try out my 18" on them next New Moon.


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#5 NYJohn S

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 09:03 AM

Thanks for sharing! In your notes - 7x35 visible and 8x56 visible. Does this refer to binocular observations? I'm trying to observe all of the Messier objects with binoculars. I'm a little more than half way there. Most of what I have left are Galaxies in the Virgo cluster and some globulars in the southern sky. It looks like you've observed all of the Messier's on the list with binoculars. That would be encouraging.



#6 SNH

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 11:15 AM

The link shows up blank, Scott, unfortunately.

I love putting an awesome, mind-blowing, large, and detailed cover image on each of my publications. The problem is that since that is the first page you see while it is loading up, it can appear blank for a minute. So if you can give it a minute or two, it should load - and while you are waiting, you should be able to view the rest of the publication! Hope that helps.

 

Scott



#7 SNH

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 11:26 AM

Thanks for sharing! In your notes - 7x35 visible and 8x56 visible. Does this refer to binocular observations? I'm trying to observe all of the Messier objects with binoculars. I'm a little more than half way there. Most of what I have left are Galaxies in the Virgo cluster and some globulars in the southern sky. It looks like you've observed all of the Messier's on the list with binoculars. That would be encouraging.

You are correct, sir! I am probably an extreme case, but I have seen 42 Messier objects naked-eye, another 65 in handheld 7x35 binoculars, and the final 3 with handheld 8x56 binoculars. I encourage you to take a look at my 250+ Catalog (there is a link to in below in my signature line) if you want to see over 300 of my observations with the naked-eye and 7x35 binoculars. I "rank" most of the objects in a fairly accurate 10-point scale that should help other observers in learning what to expect before trying an object. Especially since there is so much more in the sky visible than just the Messier objects.

 

Good luck on your binocular Messier Quest! A good pair of 10x50 binoculars shouldn't have much trouble grabbing most of them.

 

Scott


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#8 KidOrion

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 06:49 PM

Very nice work!

 

In a way, it reminds me of my own project in the Virgo Cluster, somewhat arbitrarily chosen as all those objects visible on the detail 'B' chart in Sky Atlas 2000.0. I spent six nights in late May of 2017 (with Virgo past the meridian) sweeping up all 150+ galaxies--and one globular cluster--visible on the chart. If I was going to wade into the Virgo Cluster to catch all those galaxies on the AL's Herschel lists, I was going to be pretty thorough!  Even then, I just scratched the surface, sometimes ignoring the really-faint smudges lurking in the background near the major galaxies in favor of sticking to my agenda.

 

A full recap is here: https://unfrozencave...ghts-at-virgos/

 

I wish I'd had your PDF here at the time, though--it would've helped to keep the Herschels straight! 


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#9 Daveatvt01

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Posted 27 February 2021 - 10:09 AM

Looks like a great resource, thanks!



#10 NYJohn S

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Posted 28 February 2021 - 09:26 AM

You are correct, sir! I am probably an extreme case, but I have seen 42 Messier objects naked-eye, another 65 in handheld 7x35 binoculars, and the final 3 with handheld 8x56 binoculars. I encourage you to take a look at my 250+ Catalog (there is a link to in below in my signature line) if you want to see over 300 of my observations with the naked-eye and 7x35 binoculars. I "rank" most of the objects in a fairly accurate 10-point scale that should help other observers in learning what to expect before trying an object. Especially since there is so much more in the sky visible than just the Messier objects.

 

Good luck on your binocular Messier Quest! A good pair of 10x50 binoculars shouldn't have much trouble grabbing most of them.

 

Scott

Thanks Scott. The catalog is a great reference for me. Now I have a better idea of what I'm up against as far as difficulty with binoculars. I appreciate the effort you put into it. I also downloaded the The Virgo I Galaxy Cluster PDF. I'll enjoy chasing down some of the NGC's I may have missed with my XT8 next dark site trip.

 

John


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