Beauty Doubled

Beauty Doubled

The Double Cluster: NGC 869 and NGC 884
Sketch and Details by Ferenc Lovró

The Double Cluster: NGC 869 and NGC 884

This observation and sketch was made near the dawn hour in the Kiskun Astro Camp near the village of Jászszentlászló, Hungary. As the Sun was already approaching the southern horizon, the NELM was getting worse very quickly. Therefore I’ve decided to sketch something easy that is made of many bright stars. All of a sudden I’ve picked the famous Double Cluster, which turned out to be challenging to sketch but with plenty of bright stars. So, I was racing with the Sun, since Venus was already high above the horizon. Under country skies, this pair of open clusters can be seen to the naked eye as a small fuzzy spot near the easily recognizable W-shape of the constellation Cassiopeia. It’s one of the most remarkable objects of the Northern Hemisphere, so I can’t really imagine why it was not included in the famous catalogue of Messier. From my home country it is a circumpolar object, so it can be seen through the entire year. It’s so easy, that it can be resolved with the smallest telescopes or binoculars, therefore it is great catch for everyone. SQM reading: 20.91 m/arcsec^2, 9°C.

Date / Time 2009.07.26 1:30 UT
Telescope: 12” f/5 Newtonian 45x
FOV: 1°
Seeing: 7/10 Transparency: 3/5
Object / Location: Perseus Double Cluster, R.A. 2h 21m; Dec. 57º 12’
Sketching Location: Jászszentlászló, Hungary

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