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Hickson 34 in Orion

DSO Observing Report Sketching Visual
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#1 bphaneuf

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 10:29 PM

NGC 1875 / Hickson 34 in Orion:

 

Right next to Orion’s shoulder opposite Betelgeuse sits NGC 1875 and a rather elusive but intriguing little chain of three galaxies – Hickson 34.  In Alvin Huey’s guide, Hickson 34 consists of four components/galaxies, with NGC 1875 being component A and very much the largest and brightest member, although that’s not saying much as the other three are tiny and very faint.   I saw two for sure – A and B - CGCG 421-39.  I’m fairly certain that I saw C – PGC 17175, but no dice on D – PGC 17173.  The latter is between A and C (the order moving east-southeast from NGC 1875 being A-D-C-B) and listed at vmag 18.4.  Yeah, no way in these skies and these aging eyes.  However, seeing the B component at vmag 17.5 is a personal best.  C is listed as vmag 17.3 and if I did indeed see it, is much fainter than B so it must be an SB issue.  Photos show a tidal tail between B and C, and it's in the Peculiar Galaxies Catalogue as Arp 327.  For the record, there’s a confusion of catalogues and numbers here, so I went with Alvin Huey’s guide.  An outlier – PGC 1301245 (MAC 0521-+0643A/B) was also within the field of view.  

 

Observing:  Finding the starfield was made easy by the “Y” of bright stars to the north-northwest, the stem of which points right toward the group like runway approach lights.  "This way to Hickson 34".  There’s a bright star just to the west of that line extended, and beyond that a less bright star right next to NGC 1875.  Those stars were nailed down a half hour before true dark.  That enabled me to move from 145x to 381x right away.  Then and later I tried to move in more using the 2X PowerMate, but seeing wouldn’t support 762x and I saw no more than with 381x.  Nothing of what could be C was seen at the higher magnification.  Moving back and forth between the 13mm @ 235x and the 8mm @ 381x helped to confirm the objects and what details there were.

 

NGC 1875 was seen first and is faint, but really firmed up as time went on as a 1.5:1 oval with a slightly elongated core matching the long axis and a winking nucleus.  The galaxy could be held directly for long periods of time, but the extent of the halo only in AV.

 

Component B – CGCG 421-39 (a new catalog for me) sits almost halfway between 1875 and the next star to the west.  It was very faint and intermittent but persistent.  It was a tiny 2:1 featureless smudge with its long axis oriented N-S.

 

Component C – PGC 17175 was very difficult.  Well, so was B but this was more so yet.  What I saw was a small general haziness or not-quite-as-dark-as-the-background area between 1875 and component B.  Did not really discern a shape, just a slight disruption in the darkness there.  Not knowing what else would account for that I’m guessing it’s the C component.  But I’m keeping a “?” next to it.  It didn't show up in the sketch.

 

D was not seen, and no surprise.

 

PGC 1301245 (MAC 0521-+0643A/B) was seen as a featureless 2:1 smudge between a string of 3 faint stars and a pair of bright stars to the southwest of 1875. 

 

Sketching: white pastel pencils and white pastel powder on Bachmore 92 lb. black multimedia paper.    A small round tip brush (no # on it) drew 1875’s halo.  All other details and galaxies were drawn with the 12/0 mini angular and 10/0 mini Filbert.  For what I took to be component C I used the mini Filbert and as little powder as I ever have.  That's why you can't see it.  I can barely make it out on the paper.

 

NGC 1875 and Hickson 34 in Orion.jpg           NGC 1875 and Hickson 34 in Orion labelled.jpg

 

Thanks again for looking!

-b


Edited by bphaneuf, 07 April 2024 - 11:38 PM.

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#2 Redbetter

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 11:22 PM

Sounds similar to what I saw with the 20".  There was a thread about this one, Arp 327, a few years ago.  Link.


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#3 bphaneuf

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Posted 07 April 2024 - 11:38 PM

Thanks for the link Redbetter.  An interesting read.  I forgot to mention Arp 327 in the write-up, so I made the edit.  I definitely feel more confident about "C" after reading the thread.  The additional 4" may have helped given that my skies are somewhat brighter. 



#4 JMSchwartz

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Posted 08 April 2024 - 09:54 AM

B-, Another fine sketch and observation. I don't even think I've seen this before till now. I think I'll go look at it when Orion comes around again. Thanks for sharon as always.

CSS Jon 


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#5 mdowns

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Posted 08 April 2024 - 10:33 AM

Congratulations are in order here Butch. Not only for finding the group but most of all, for nailing a 17.5 mag target. Your reaching into limits few have crossed.Considering your site's sky brightness this is a real accomplishment.I can hear PGC 17173 chuckling though,it's taunting you grin.gif .


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#6 bphaneuf

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Posted 08 April 2024 - 10:53 AM

Congratulations are in order here Butch. Not only for finding the group but most of all, for nailing a 17.5 mag target. Your reaching into limits few have crossed.Considering your site's sky brightness this is a real accomplishment.

Thanks!  That was a great feeling and answered some of my whining about not having darker skies. 
 

 

I can hear PGC 17173 chuckling though,it's taunting you grin.gif .

Uh huh.  I can too.  But I don't feel that bad if Huey didn't see it either.  18.4 is ...  whatever smirk.gif
 



#7 niteskystargazer

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Posted 08 April 2024 - 10:55 AM

Butch,

 

Good sketches of Hickson 34 (In Orion) smile.gif .

 

CDS,KLU,

 

thanx.gif ,

 

Tom



#8 Herodotus

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Posted 10 April 2024 - 09:15 AM

Very nice and congrats on the new catalogue and the 17.5! Impressive for sure!

#9 bphaneuf

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Posted 11 April 2024 - 11:09 AM

Thanks for the encouraging words Redbetter, Mike, Michael, Jon and Tom and for the likes!




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