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August 27, 2010 August 29, 2010

Posted by orionrising in Observing.
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The Elusive "Arrow" in Delphinus the Dolphin's Head Area

Object: Constellation

Site: Front Yard

Seeing: 3

Transparency: Good

Type: Deep Sky

Constellation: Delphinus

Magnification: 10x

FOV: 4.8 Degrees

Observing Time: 11:20pm – 11:30pm

Notes: Found this interesting formation of stars, while scanning the skies near Cygnus.  At first I didn’t know how to find it in my star map, there were no useful reference points.  After looking and searching for a lengthy amount of time in Stellarium, I’m now pretty certain that this is the head area of Delphinus, the Dolphin, a faint constellation closer to the horizon from Cygnus the Swan.  It looked like a downward-pointing arrow at first glance, but the constellation diagram in Stellarium and other star maps depict Delphinus’ head as a diamond– probably this was the source of confusion.  This constellation is relatively hard to find, but a very rewarding experience overall, because this is the first time I viewed this constellation at all.  Delphinus isn’t visible using the naked eye from my observing site.  I’m planning to revisit Delphinus later to take a closer and more detailed look, in my haste to identify the pattern itself I don’t think I did it complete justice yet!

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