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    • Messier catalog

      Messier catalog - the most popular catalog of galaxies and nebulae, especially for beginners. In this catalog the brightest objects of the Deep Space are collected, which are accessible for observation in amateur telescopes.
      List of Messier objects
      Marathon Messier

      Charles Messier' title= Charles Messier (1730-1817) - french astronomer. Since 1764 he worked at the Paris Observatory.
      While searching for comets, Messier decided to create a catalog of foggy objects in the sky to facilitate the life of himself and other "comet catchers", so as not to take foggy formations in the sky for new comets.
      There have been several releases of the Messier catalog , in which objects collected by Charles Messier, astronomer Pierre Meshen and other astronomers have been collected. In total, 110 objects are included in the catalog - galaxies, nebulae and star clusters.  Objects are numbered as they are found and entered in the catalog. He did not find all the objects of the Messier catalog himself. Messier studied the records of many of his predecessors, rechecking them. Nevertheless, many objects are open to them.

      Pierre Meshen Astronomer Pierre Meschen, who worked simultaneously with Messier, discovered almost half of the objects from the Messier catalog. His first discovery was the spiral galaxy M63. Messier cross-checked Meshen's messages and put them in his catalog.
      The first edition of the Messier catalog was published in 1774 and contained 45 objects.
      The last edition was published in 1781 and contained 103 objects.
      Messier wanted to stop at the figure of 100, but by the time the last manuscript was sent to the press, Meshen told about three more objects.
      Messier interrupted the filling of the catalog due to severe injury, and also because the English astronomer William Herschel, having acquired more powerful equipment, issued a catalog of 2500 objects.
      The Messier catalog was added to the M110 facility after his death, because Messier observed some objects, although he did not assign them separate numbers.
      M104 - M107 were opened by Meshen, and M108 and M109 have already been mentioned in the description of the M97. M110, the satellite of the Andromeda nebula, - Messier saw him, but did not consider it necessary to allocate.

      It is Messier's catalog that we owe the presence of the letter M in the most used names of such objects as: The globular cluster M13, the Andromeda nebula M31 ...
      For the amateur astronomer Messier's catalog is especially interesting because it was compiled at the end of the 18th century, when the telescopes were not yet very powerful. This means that Messier's catalog contains only the brightest objects, which today are the easiest to see in an amateur telescope.
      Messier himself later said that he had previously limited himself to a telescope with a focal length of 60 cm.
      Although, there are quite noticeable objects that are not included in the Messier catalog. For example, star clusters of Chi and Ash Perseus (NGC 884 and NGC 869) or galaxy NGC 3628 from Triplet of Leo, which is not inferior to its neighbors M65 and M66. Therefore, Messier's catalog is well supplemented with the catalog of Caldwell.
      A more complete catalog of NGC includes a much larger number of galaxies and nebulae, but most of them require more powerful equipment than an "ordinary" amateur astronomer telescope.

      List of Messier objects

      Here is a complete list of Messier catalog objects. For the most notable objects, links to pages with their descriptions are given.

      Filters:
      Full catalog Galaxies Star clusters Nebulae
      - spiral - globular
      - elliptical - open

      Globular star-clusters of the Messier catalog


      # in Messier and NGC catalogs Object type Coord.
      α
      δ
      Visual magnit. Angular size Constellation Note
      M2
      M2 NGC 7089
      Globular star cluster 21h 33.5m
      -00° 49'
      6,3m 16' Aquarius
      (Aqr)
      M3
      M3 NGC 5272
      Globular star cluster 13h 42.2m
      +28° 23'
      7,0m 19' Canes Venatici
      (CVn)
      M4
      M4 NGC 6121
      Globular star cluster 16h 23.6m
      -26° 32'
      5,6m 35' Scorpius
      (Sco)
      M5
      M5 NGC 5904
      Globular star cluster 15h 18.6m
      +02° 05'
      5,6m 20' Serpens
      (Ser)
      M9
      M9 NGC 6333
      Globular star cluster 17h 19.2m
      -18° 31'
      7,7m 11' Ophiuchus
      (Oph)
      M10
      M10 NGC 6254
      Globular star cluster 16h 57.1m
      -04° 06'
      6,7m 19' Ophiuchus
      (Oph)
      M12
      M12 NGC 6218
      Globular star cluster 16h 47.2m
      -01° 57'
      8,0m 14' Ophiuchus
      (Oph)
      M13
      M13 NGC 6205
      Globular star cluster 16h 41.4m
      +36° 27'
      7,0m 21' Hercules
      (Her)
      Great Globular Cluster in Hercules Сluster
      M14
      M14 NGC 6402
      Globular star cluster 17h 37.6m
      -03° 15'
      9,5m 11' Ophiuchus
      (Oph)
      M15
      M15 NGC 7078
      Globular star cluster 21h 30.0m
      +12° 10'
      7,5m 18' Pegasus
      (Peg)
      M19
      M19 NGC 6273
      Globular star cluster 17h 02.6m
      -26° 16'
      8,5m 14' Ophiuchus
      (Oph)
      M22
      M22 NGC 6656
      Globular star cluster 18h 36.4m
      -23° 54'
      6,5m 33' Sagittarius
      (Sgr)
      Sagittarius Сluster
      M28
      M28 NGC 6626
      Globular star cluster 18h 24.5m
      -24° 52'
      8,5m 10' Sagittarius
      (Sgr)
      M30
      M30 NGC 7099
      Globular star cluster 21h 40.4m
      -23° 11'
      8,5m 12' Capricornus
      (Cap)
      M53
      M53 NGC 5024
      Globular star cluster 13h 12.9m
      +18° 10'
      8,5m 13' Coma Berenices
      (Com)
      M54
      M54 NGC 6715
      Globular star cluster 18h 55.1m
      -30° 29'
      8,5m 12' Sagittarius
      (Sgr)
      M55
      M55 NGC 6809
      Globular star cluster 19h 40.0m
      -30° 58'
      7,0m 19' Sagittarius
      (Sgr)
      M56
      M56 NGC 6779
      Globular star cluster 19h 16.6m
      +30° 11'
      9,5m 7' Lyra
      (Lyr)
      M62
      M62 NGC 6266
      Globular star cluster 17h 01.2m
      -30° 07'
      8,0m 11' Ophiuchus
      (Oph)
      M68
      M68 NGC 4590
      Globular star cluster 12h 39.5m
      -26° 45'
      9,0m 11' Hydra
      (Hya)
      M69
      M69 NGC 6637
      Globular star cluster 18h 31.4m
      -32° 21'
      9,0m 10' Sagittarius
      (Sgr)
      M70
      M70 NGC 6681
      Globular star cluster 18h 43.2m
      -32° 17'
      9,0m 8' Sagittarius
      (Sgr)
      M71
      M71 NGC 6838
      Globular star cluster 19h 53.8m
      +18° 47'
      8,5m 7' Sagitta
      (Sge)
      M72
      M72 NGC 6981
      Globular star cluster 20h 53.5m
      -12° 32'
      10,0m 6' Aquarius
      (Aqr)
      M75
      M75 NGC 6864
      Globular star cluster 20h 06.1m
      -21° 55'
      9,5m 7' Sagittarius
      (Sgr)
      M79
      M79 NGC 1904
      Globular star cluster 05h 24.2m
      -24° 31'
      8,5m 6' Lepus
      (Lep)
      M80
      M80 NGC 6093
      Globular star cluster 16h 17.0m
      -22° 59'
      7,3m 9' Scorpius
      (Sco)
      M92
      M92 NGC 6341
      Globular star cluster 17h 17.1m
      +43° 08'
      7,5m 14' Hercules
      (Her)
      M107
      M107 NGC 6171
      Globular star cluster 16h 32.5m
      -13° 03'
      10,0m 13' Ophiuchus
      (Oph)

      Marathon Messier

      Marathon Messier - a kind of "race" for astronomers, observers. No, with the telescope behind you, there's no need to run anywhere :). The fact is that twice a year, on a new moon in March and in October, such conditions develop, that all objects of the Messier catalog can be seen in one night!
      This is the name of the Messier Marathon. Yes, it is rather not about watching the celestial bodies, but about the speeding up of the telescope. Nevertheless, it is difficult not to agree with the fact that even in this case the impressions will be higher than the roof!
      Alas, if you read this article at the mentioned time, then ... do not rush to rejoice. In order to perform the Messier marathon, you must be between 10° and 35° north latitude at this time ...

      Lives in the north and there is no way to go south with a good telescope? Do not be upset. The Messier Marathon, albeit in a limited form, can be held in the north. The main thing is that you now know at what time it's best to do it.
      Of course, you will not see the southernmost objects, they will be beyond the horizon. But all the other objects Messier will be in your field of vision overnight.


      This version of the Messier catalog uses pictures of www.nasa.gov (NASA) and other sources. Images in the places of their original location are mentioned as free from license restrictions. In case of misunderstandings, please contact the authors: let me know and they will be deleted. 

      Nikolay Kurdyapin, astro-map.com  
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