North Central Kansas Astronomical Society

Home | Events | Projects | Members Corner | Carbon Stars | Double Stars | Galaxies | Globular Clusters | Nebulae | Open Clusters | Solar System | Stars | Images | Asterisms
Student Images | Search | Current Weather 



NGC 869 & NGC 884: A Double Open Cluster 
Credit & Copyright: Thomas V. Davis (tvdavisastropix.com)

Explanation: Most star clusters are singularly impressive. Open clusters NGC 869 and NGC 884, however, are doubly impressive. Also known as "h and chi Persei", this unusual double cluster, shown above, is bright enough to be seen from a dark location without even binoculars. Although their discovery surely predates written history, the Greek astronomer Hipparchus notably cataloged the "double cluster". The clusters are over 7,000 light years distant toward the constellation of Perseus, but are separated by only hundreds of light years. 


A collection of Open Clusters 
ARIES (AY-ri-eez) The Golden Ram. Genitive: Arietis (AY-ri-e-tis). Abbreviation: Ari
Dolidze-Dzimselejsvili 1, TYC1223-1237
GSC 1223:1237
Sparse Open Cluster with several dim galaxies.
RA: 02h 47m 34.85s Dec: +1716'35.32"
RA: 02h 47m 25.38s Dec: +1715'50.04"
**** Observation Log ****
Sue French describes this little known cluster as a scanty group but it stands out well again the region's star-poor background.
Back to top...  
AURIGA (aw-REE-ga) The Charioteer. Genitive: Aurigae (aw-RYE-je). Abbreviation: Aur
M36, NGC 1960
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Aur
Dreyer description: Cluster, bright, very large, very rich in stars, little compressed, stars of magnitude 9 to 11 scattered; = M36.
Magnitude: 6.0
RA: 05h 36m 18.3s Dec: +3408'13"
RA: 05h 36m 06.0s Dec: +3408'00"
**** Observation Log ****
Known as the Pinwheel cluster. I see either a slithering snake or a treble clef sign with the brighter line of stars through the middle.
M37, NGC 2099
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Aur
Dreyer description: Cluster, rich in stars, westward compressed middle, stars large & small; = M37.
Magnitude: 5.6
RA: 05h 52m 36.2s Dec: +3233'08"
RA: 05h 52m 24.0s Dec: +3233'00"
**** Observation Log ****
Known as Auriga Salt and Pepper. A very dense open cluster, looking almost like a loose globular cluster. A central larger yellow star really shines through on the open cluster
M38, NGC 1912
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Aur
Dreyer description: Cluster, bright, very large, very rich in stars, irregular figure, stars large & small; = M38.
Magnitude: 6.4
RA: 05h 28m 54.4s Dec: +3550'15"
RA: 05h 28m 42.0s Dec: +3550'00"
**** Observation Log ****
Loose cruciform cluster with a knot of stars in the upper right.
Back to top...  

CAMELOPARDALIS (ka-MEL-oh-pard-al-iss) The Griaffe. Genitive: Camelopardalis (ka-MEL-oh-pard-al-iss). Abbreviation: Cam

NGC 1502
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Cam
Dreyer description: Cluster, westward rich in stars, considerably compressed, irregular figure.
Magnitude: 5.7
RA: 04h 08m 04.1s Dec: +6220'50" 
RA: 04h 07m 42.0s Dec: +6220'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* 12/21/2003, 10:20 PM *******
Beautiful tight open cluster at the end of a wonderful asterism known as Kemble's Cascade.  The two close bright stars in the middle of the cluster is a type O double star SZ Cam.
Back to top...  
CANIS MAJOR (KAY-nis May-jer) The Big Dog. Genitive: Canis Majoris (Kay-nis May-JOR-is). Abbreviation: CMa
M41, NGC 2287
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: CMa
Dreyer description: Cluster, very large, bright, little compressed, stars of magnitude 8 and fainter; = M41.
Magnitude: 4.5
RA: 06h 46m 11.2s Dec: -2044'13" 
RA: 06h 46m 00.0s Dec: -2044'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
Open cluster in Canis Major, Cma. A pretty, dense open cluster just south and west of Sirius. A beautiful cluster in Canis Major. A large striking yellow-red star the southwest. To me has more yellow stars than most clusters.
Collinder 121, SAO 172542, GSC 6522:3271, HIP 33152, PPM 251217, HD 50877, P-24 1745
Flamsteed-Bayer: 16-Omicron1 Canis Majoris
Spectral: K3Iab
**** Data from Hipparcos Catalog ****
Proper motion (mas/yr): RA = -3.46, Dec = 5.02
Magnitudes Bt: 6.143, Vt: 4.040
Parallax: 1.650 mas, 606.0606 pc
Distance: 1976.71 light-years, 125009199.79 astronomical units
Magnitude: 3.89
RA: 06h 54m 18.883s Dec: -2411'18.783" 
RA: 06h 54m 07.953s Dec: -2411'03.159" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
SAO 172542, Omicron O1 Canis Major - Collinder 121 - Could scope in the Star, but you really have to use your imagination to connect the stars as a cluster. Omicron CMa looks Orange to me. Sue French calls it deep yellow. Either way it's a pretty star.  
NGC 2354
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: CMa
Dreyer description: Cluster, considerably rich in stars, little compressed.
Magnitude: 6.5
RA: 07h 14m 28.8s Dec: -2544'21" 
RA: 07h 14m 18.0s Dec: -2544'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
Another pretty open cluster in Canis Major. 
NGC 2362
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: CMa
Dreyer description: Cluster, pretty large, rich in stars (30 CMa).
Magnitude: 4.1
RA: 07h 18m 58.9s Dec: -2457'23" 
RA: 07h 18m 48.0s Dec: -2457'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
A gorgeous dense cluster. Also called the Mexican Jumping Star. I don't know why. An absolute jewel to behold! The central star, Tau Canis Major looks like a gem surrounded by smaller jewels. Wonderful and recommended.
Back to top...  
CANCER (KAN-ser) The Crab. Genitive: Cancri (KAN-kre). Abbreviation: Cnc
M67, NGC 2682
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Cnc
Dreyer description: Remarkable! Cluster, very bright, very large, extremely rich in stars, little compressed, stars of magnitude 10 to 15; = M67.
Magnitude: 6.9
RA: 08h 50m 37.8s Dec: +1148'08" 
RA: 08h 50m 24.0s Dec: +1149'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Another nice Open Cluster. This time in the un-auspicious constellation of Cancer.
Beehive Cluster, Praesepe, M44, NGC 2632
Other description: Open cluster bright scattered.
Constellation: Cnc
Dreyer description: Praesepe; = M44.
Magnitude: 3.1
RA: 08h 40m 20.6s Dec: +1958'10" 
RA: 08h 40m 06.0s Dec: +1959'00" (Epoch 2000)
Azm: 3926'36" Alt: -2021'34" 
**** Observation Log ****
(Pree-Sep-Pee), Or Beehive Cluster in Cancer. Open bright cluster scattered and triangular in shape with lovely blue and yellow stars. This is a wonderful binocular object.
Back to top...  

CASSIOPEIA (Kass-ee-oh-PEE-ah) The Queen. Genitive: Cassiopeiae (Kass-ee-oh-PEE-yee). Abbreviation: Cas

ET Cluster, Owl Cluster, NGC 457
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, bright, large, westward rich in stars, stars of magnitude 7, 8, 10.
Magnitude: 6.4
RA: 01h 19m 19.9s Dec: +5821'30" 
RA: 01h 19m 06.0s Dec: +5820'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
The Owl Cluster: This is such a wonder open cluster and one that I think most resembles it's name. It really looks like a flying owl, looking at it from above. The two brightest stars are 34-Phi Cassiopeiae, a striking yellow and blue wide double. 
M52, NGC 7654
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, large, rich in stars, much compressed middle, round, stars of magnitude 9 to 13; = M52.
Magnitude: 6.9
RA: 23h 24m 20.2s Dec: +6136'29" 
RA: 23h 24m 12.0s Dec: +6135'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
Open Cluster in Cas. A lovely, highly compact, highly resolved jewel.
King 14
Constellation: Cas
RA: 00h 31m 20.3s Dec: +6323'11"
RA: 00h 31m 12.0s Dec: +6322'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Pretty much an upper extension of NGC 146, yet can stand by itself as a pretty little cluster.
NGC 133
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, pretty large, stars of magnitude 10 and fainter, double star involved.
Magnitude: 9.0
RA: 00h 31m 20.3s Dec: +6323'11"
RA: 00h 31m 12.0s Dec: +6322'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A pretty little cluster with the distinctive "Y" shape.
NGC 146
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, pretty large, little compressed, stars of magnitude 11-12, double star.
Magnitude: 9.1
RA: 00h 33m 14.4s Dec: +6319'11"
RA: 00h 33m 06.0s Dec: +6318'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
An interesting shaped cluster. Almost a figure 8 if you link the stars.
NGC 225
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, large, little compressed, stars of magnitude 9 to 10.
Magnitude: 7.0
RA: 00h 43m 32.8s Dec: +6148'11"
RA: 00h 43m 24.0s Dec: +6147'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A lazy figure 3 in the sky. A very pretty little cluster.
NGC 129
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, very large, westward round, little compressed, stars of magnitude 9 to 13.
Magnitude: 6.5
RA: 00h 30m 02.3s Dec: +6015'11"
RA: 00h 29m 54.0s Dec: +6014'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Open cluster bright scattered. DL Cas. is a variable star. It's the bright one in the center. This little star was yellow in color to me.
NGC 7788
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, small, westward rich in stars, very compressed, stars of magnitude 10, 13 and fainter.
Magnitude: 9.0
RA: 23h 56m 48.9s Dec: +6125'10"
RA: 23h 56m 42.0s Dec: +6124'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A pretty little cluster with a sparkling compressed central part.
NGC 7790
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, westward rich in stars, westward compressed.
Magnitude: 8.5
RA: 23h 58m 31.0s Dec: +6114'10"
RA: 23h 58m 24.0s Dec: +6113'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A pretty little cluster with a sparkling compressed outer part. It doesn't show up in this Digital Sky photo, but the compressed parts are very striking compared to the sparse nature of the rest of the cluster.
NGC 381
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, westward compressed.
Magnitude: 9.0
RA: 01h 08m 27.9s Dec: +6136'10"
RA: 01h 08m 18.0s Dec: +6135'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A pretty little cluster with a tight structure.
NGC 436
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, small, irregular figure, westward compressed.
Magnitude: 8.8
RA: 01h 15m 49.4s Dec: +5850'30" 
RA: 01h 15m 36.0s Dec: +5849'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
1/22/04-A small spattering of stars close to NGC 457. A lovely little open cluster.
M103, NGC 581
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, pretty large, bright, round, rich in stars, stars of magnitude 10 to 11; = M103.
Magnitude: 7.4
RA: 01h 33m 26.4s Dec: +6043'29" 
RA: 01h 33m 12.0s Dec: +6042'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
1/22/04-A pretty open cluster that looks distinctly like a large question mark to me. A very red star is in the middle right where the stem of the question mark connects to the arc. The top of the arc of the question mark and the base of the stem are striking blue stars.
Back to top...  
CEPHEUS (SEE-fee-us) The King. Genitive: Cephei (See-fee-eye). Abbreviation: Cep
NGC 6939
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Cep
Dreyer description: Cluster, pretty large, extremely rich in stars, westward compressed middle, stars of magnitude 11 to 16.
Magnitude: 7.8
RA: 20h 31m 30.6s Dec: +6039'05" 
RA: 20h 31m 24.0s Dec: +6038'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
In the same low-power FOV as the Galaxy NGC 6949. This is a very dense Open Cluster that takes on a misting quality and spiral structure. A lovely object that can be seen year round.
NGC 2420
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Gem
Dreyer description: Cluster, considerably large, rich in stars, compressed, stars of magnitude 11 to 18.
Magnitude: 8.3
RA: 07h 38m 49.1s Dec: +2133'23" 
RA: 07h 38m 30.0s Dec: +2134'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
This misting of an OC is in the same FOV as Saturn in early February of 2005.
Back to top...  
GEMINI (JEM-in-eye) The Twins. Genitive: Geminorum (JEM-i-nor-um). Abbreviation: Gem
M35, NGC 2168
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Gem
Dreyer description: Cluster, very large, considerably rich in stars, westward compressed, stars of magnitude 9 to 16; = M35.
Magnitude: 5.1
RA: 06h 09m 05.5s Dec: +2420'01"
RA: 06h 08m 54.0s Dec: +2420'00"
**** Observation Log ****
It's fun to pick out shapes in these wonderful open clusters. I see a rocket ship with a round nose shooting to the upper right. This was very easy to see in the eyepiece.
NGC 2158
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Gem
Dreyer description: Cluster, pretty small, much compressed, very rich in stars, irregular triangle stars extremely small.
Magnitude: 8.6
RA: 06h 07m 41.5s Dec: +2406'02"
RA: 06h 07m 30.0s Dec: +2406'00"
**** Observation Log ****
A very hard object indeed if you don't have a good dark sky. It tends to wash out. Best under very dark moonless skies. Very close to M35. I was even able to glimpse this open cluster with binoculars at a very dark sky site.
Back to top...  

MONOCEROS (Mo-NOS-er-os) The Unicorn. Genitive: Monocerotis (Mo-NOS-eroo-tis). Abbreviation: Mon

M48, NGC 2548
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Hya
Dreyer description: Cluster, very large, westward rich in stars, westward much compressed, stars of magnitude 9 to 13; = M48.
Magnitude: 5.8
RA: 08h 14m 00.6s Dec: -0548'40" 
RA: 08h 13m 48.0s Dec: -0548'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
A nice Open Cluster in Monoceros; Messier's error omitted this object in his catalog.
M52, NGC 7654
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Cas
Dreyer description: Cluster, large, rich in stars, much compressed middle, round, stars of magnitude 9 to 13; = M52.
Magnitude: 6.9
RA: 23h 24m 20.2s Dec: +6136'29" 
RA: 23h 24m 12.0s Dec: +6135'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
Open Cluster in Cassiopeia. A lovely, highly compact, highly resolved jewel.
NGC 2239
Other description: Nebula with dust low brightness.
Constellation: Mon
Dreyer description: 8th magnitude star in large, sparse in stars, bright cluster.
RA: 06h 31m 13.5s Dec: +0456'53" 
RA: 06h 31m 00.0s Dec: +0457'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* Observer Log *******
Open cluster with nebulosity in Monoceros. I could find the cluster with ease, but no Rosette Nebula - I tried a Lumicron OIII filter, but the moon was too bright. Will tackle this one later and look for the large Rosette Nebula that covers 3. The cluster was nice though...I have yet to glimpse this elusive nebula...
M50, NGC 2323
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Mon
Dreyer description: Remarkable! Cluster, very large, rich in stars, westward compressed, extended, stars of magnitude 12 to 16; = M50.
Magnitude: 5.9
RA: 07h 03m 12.0s Dec: -0820'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Called the Heart-Shaped Cluster. A wonderful large cluster and a bit lop-sided for a heart.
Back to top...  
ORION (Oh-RYE-an) The Hunter. Genitive: Orionis (OR-e-oh-nis). Abbreviation: Ori
NGC 2169
Other description: Open cluster bright scattered.
Constellation: Ori
Dreyer description: Cluster, small, little rich in stars, westward much compressed, double star (ADS 4728).
Magnitude: 5.9
RA: 06h 08m 41.6s Dec: +1357'04" 
RA: 06h 08m 24.0s Dec: +1357'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A gorgeous, striking cluster. Very angular in appearance. Looks like a digital "37".
NGC 2169
Other description: Open cluster bright scattered.
Constellation: Ori
Dreyer description: Cluster, small, little rich in stars, westward much compressed, double star (ADS 4728).
Magnitude: 5.9
RA: 06h 08m 41.6s Dec: +1357'04" 
RA: 06h 08m 24.0s Dec: +1357'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Gorgeous striking cluster. Very angular in appearance. 
Back to top...  
PERSEUS (PUR-see-us) The Hero. Genitive: Persei (PUR-see-eye). Abbreviation: Per
Open Cluster, Double Cluster in Perseus - NGC 884, NGC 869, h and Chi Persei
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Per
Dreyer description: Remarkable! Cluster, very large, very rich in stars, ruby star middle.
Magnitude: 4.0
RA: 02h 22m 40.2s Dec: +5707'55" 
RA: 02h 22m 24.0s Dec: +5707'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Incredible! The famous Double Cluster in Perseus. I used the 6"LT, and it was wonderful. Each cluster was absolutely packed with stars. This cluster is a must for any size telescope. These clusters are magnificent viewed with wide-field as a pair, or viewed separately under higher magnification and smaller field of view.
NGC 744
Other description: Open cluster bright scattered.
Constellation: Per
Dreyer description: Cluster, pretty large, westward rich in stars, irregular figure, stars of magnitude 11 to 13.
Magnitude: 7.9
RA: 01h 58m 38.9s Dec: +5530'24" 
RA: 01h 58m 24.0s Dec: +5529'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A loose open cluster just inside the border of Perseus from Cassiopeia. 
M34, NGC 1039
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Per
Dreyer description: Cluster, bright, very large, little compressed, scattered stars of magnitude 9; = M34.
Magnitude: 5.2
RA: 02h 42m 22.4s Dec: +4248'27" 
RA: 02h 42m 00.0s Dec: +4247'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Avery pretty open cluster just inside the border of Perseus from Andromeda. Has the look of a thin-necked bird in flight with a very small triangular head. 
Back to top...  
PUPPIS (PUP-is) The Ship's Stern. Genitive: Puppis (PUP-is). Abbreviation: Pup
M93, NGC 2447
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Pup
Dreyer description: Cluster, large, westward rich in stars, little compressed, stars of magnitude 8 to 13; = M93.
Magnitude: 6.2
RA: 07h 44m 47.1s Dec: -2352'30" 
RA: 07h 44m 36.0s Dec: -2352'00" (Epoch 2000)
******* 9/23/2003, 12:20 AM *******
Also called the Butterfly Cluster- We leave Canis Major and head to Puppis for this Messier object. A large open dense cluster . Called the Butterfly cluster in StarryNight Pro, but M6 is called the Butterfly Cluster in APOD??? Hmmmmm??? This looks more like a Red-tailed Hawk with it's tail fanned out to us.
M47, NGC 2422
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Pup
Dreyer description: Cluster, bright, very large, westward rich in stars, stars large and small; = M47.
Magnitude: 4.4
RA: 07h 36m 36.0s Dec: -1430'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
A very large, bold cluster with larger yellow colored stars. From the diffraction spikes above, it looks like some double systems are there, but I think most are singles.
M46, NGC 2437
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Pup
Dreyer description: Remarkable!, cluster, very bright, very rich in stars, very large, involved planetary nebula; = M46.
Magnitude: 6.1
RA: 07h 41m 48.0s Dec: -1449'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Discover this wonderful little "Ring" planetary in Puppis. A wonderful soft cluster, with many stars.
Back to top...  
SAGITTARIUS (Sa-jih-TARE-ee-us) TheArcher. Genitive: Sagittarii (Sa-jih-TARE-ee-eye). Abbreviation: Sgr
M23, NGC 6494
Other description: Open cluster dense.
Constellation: Sgr
Dreyer description: Cluster, bright, very large, westward rich in stars, little compressed, stars of magnitude 10 and fainter; = M23.
Magnitude: 5.5
RA: 17h 57m 07.9s Dec: -1901'09" 
RA: 17h 56m 48.0s Dec: -1901'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Beautiful. large Open Cluster in a wonderful star field.  2.5 NW of M20 and M21 in Sagittarius. I see a round-headed figure of a person with a curved stick in his right hand...
M21, NGC 6531
Other description: Open cluster rich.
Constellation: Sgr
Dreyer description: Cluster, westward rich in stars, little compressed, stars of magnitude 9 to 12; = M21.
Magnitude: 5.9
RA: 18h 04m 56.4s Dec: -2230'07" 
RA: 18h 04m 36.0s Dec: -2230'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Relatively tight Open Cluster in a wonderful star field.  Just a tad East and North M20, the Trifid Nebula. It's members really glitter against the dense background.
M25, IC 4725
Dreyer description: Cluster, westward compressed; = M25.
Magnitude: 4.0
RA: 18h 31m 56.1s Dec: -1914'52" 
RA: 18h 31m 36.0s Dec: -1915'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
NGC 6774
Other description: Open cluster scattered.
Constellation: Sgr
Dreyer description: Cluster, very large, little compressed.
RA: 19h 16m 52.5s Dec: -1615'35"
RA: 19h 16m 36.0s Dec: -1616'00" (Epoch 2000)
**** Observation Log ****
Very sparse, loose open cluster in Sagittarius.
Back to top...  

Home | Events | Projects | Members Corner | Carbon Stars | Double Stars | Galaxies | Globular Clusters | Nebulae | Open Clusters | Solar System | Stars | Images | Asterisms
Student Images | Search | Current Weather
© 2005- 2014 North Central Kansas Astronomical Society - All Rights Reserved