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The Fall Messier Marathon Guide Ed Ting, NHAS, CMP Oct 17 th 2008.

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Presentation on theme: "The Fall Messier Marathon Guide Ed Ting, NHAS, CMP Oct 17 th 2008."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Fall Messier Marathon Guide Ed Ting, NHAS, CMP Oct 17 th 2008

2 Messier Marathon An informal competition to locate the most Messier objects by a single observer during a dusk-to-dawn Marathon.

3 How Many Can You Expect To See? March: June: October:

4 From Southern NH Daylight lasts approx 11 hours and 30 minutes Everything is shifted by 6 hours compared to a conventional March MM

5 What Doesnt Change You still have to stay up all night long The average time to find each object goes up – about 7 minutes, 25 seconds per object The busiest times are the beginning and the end, with a lull in the middle

6 Your New Problem Objects Are… M4 and M80 are right on the western horizon M104, M68, and M83 are lost in the morning sun

7 M3 M3 is also a problem (18 deg above horizon at 6 PM)

8 What Does Change M30, M72, and M73 are no longer difficult Scorpio is now the early problem March – The Sun is in Capricorn October – The Sun is in Virgo

9 One Big Change The Virgo Cluster must be tackled while the sun is rising Thus, the VC is now a Bonus Object M64, M53, M61, etc become problems also

10 For Experienced Observers You have to readjust your thinking Beginners have the upper hand here!

11 Your New Goal 91 Objects 5 Objects are not visible The Virgo Cluster galaxies (14 objects) become Bonus Objects.

12 The Sky at 6:00 PM

13 The First 2 Hours Goal – Get 20 Objects (22% of total) M62, M19, M6, M7, M5, M97, M108, M109, M81, M82, M101, M102 (NGC 5866), M51, M3, M53, M63, M94, M107, M12, M10

14 The Sky at 10 PM

15 9 –11 PM Sagittarius Sagittarius, Scutum, Ophiucus M10, M23, M24, M25, M69, M70, M54, M9, M14, M8, M20, M21, M28, M22, M55, M16, M17, M11, M26 Goal: Get 19 Objects (20%, 42% of total) Lots of showpiece objects

16 Sagittarius/ Scorpius Area

17 The Sky at Midnight

18 Midnight to 2 AM Goal: Get 22 objects (25%, 67% total) M40, M106, M75, M13, M92, M57, M56, M27, M71, M2, M72, M73, M30, M29, M39, M15, M74, M77, M31, M32, M110, M33

19 The Sky at 4 AM

20 4 AM – Winter Objects Goal: Get 31 objects (33%, 100%) M103, M52, M34, M76, M79, M1, M45, M37, M36, M38, M50, M47, M46, M93, M41, M35, M41, M42, M43, M78, M48, M44, M67, M105, M96, M95, M65, M66, M61, M64, M85

21 The Virgo Cluster The bad news – You have to find 14 dim objects (15% of the total MM) The VC is rising in the east, along with the sun! These are all Bonus Objects

22 The Virgo Cluster

23 Work From Left To Right

24 From Skymap


26 Youre Done! How did you do? Dont forget to report your results to the club for the newsletter. If you followed the Goals you should have 91 objects (82%)

27 Tips & Tricks (p. 1 of 2) Use a scope with a short focal length Consider using an alt-az scope Bring a pair of binoculars Have a method for dealing with dew Eat light snacks throughout the evening Once in a particular area, stay there until you get all the objects there

28 Tips and Tricks (p. 2 of 2) Work West to East, South to North Work from a list Bring a chair Dont forget to have fun!

29 Books For Further Reading

30 Good Luck!

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