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Thread: Amazing object viewed at Northern Nights (Lights) Star Fest in Minnesota

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Saint Paul, MN

    Amazing object viewed at Northern Nights (Lights) Star Fest in Minnesota

    Two weeks ago I attended the NNSF (Northern Nights-Lights Star Fest). This event is held under dark sky in northern Minnesota. We saw amazing aurora on multiple nights of this star party. However, the object of the party for me was NGC 6781. It is sometimes referred to as the Snow Globe planetary nebula. I observed this object with my friend's 18" Teeter telescope. Obviously, Aquila is positioned nicely right now. This is a large, but faint nebula. I believe I would have no chance of seeing this object in a small scope or even under slightly light polluted skies.

  2. #2
    Member Ivan Maly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    So you actually saw the aurora. Here nothing as such was visible, but it ruined this dark of the moon alright, a 0.2-0.4 mag/sq arcsec diffuse glow. Nonetheless I reobserved a number of objects including NGC 6781. In the 20" (and the punk 21.0 mag/sq arcsec sky even in the south, by SQM-L) the appearance was that of a ring smeared out to one side, and the sharp part of the ring were pretty sharp with a strong suggestion of being double, very nice. I first saw it (without detail) from a remote dark site in 7" and later in 4".

  3. #3
    Member Steve Gottlieb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Northern California
    Here's another observation of NGC 6781 from a couple of months ago.

    24" (6/30/16): at 322x and 500x; fairly bright and large, round, just under 2' diameter. Contains a relatively thick, much brighter rim, except on the north side. The annulus is unevenly in surface brightness, but brighter along a 180 arc, centered on the side south and dimming gradually but extending to 240. This gives the planetary a "C" shape appearance. The remaining 120 arc, centered on the north edge, is noticeably fainter. A mag ~13.5 star is at the northeast edge, a mag ~14.5 star is just off the north-northwest edge and a mag 15.5+ star is barely off the south edge. An extremely faint star is superimposed just north-northeast of center (probably not the central star).
    24" f/3.7 Starstructure
    18" f/4.3 Starmaster
    Adventures in Deep Space
    Contributing Editor, Sky & Tel

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Northeast Wisconsin USA

    Glad to oblige...

    Hey Brandon, I only caught your post now, as I've been away from this forum for some time. Glad to oblige, and I hope we see you again (after MAS hosts AL CON 2018) at the 2018 Northern Nights Star Fest!

    I enjoyed observing with you, Bob King and your fellow club members at NNSF in 2016.


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