Sagittarius
by Steve Coe
13" f/5.6 unless noted


NGC 6440 Pretty bright, pretty small, compressed and much brighter in the middle at 135X. Raising the power to 220X brings out ragged edges with 10 stars resolved.

NGC 6445 Pretty bright, large and has a elongated box shape at 200X. The outer rim of this planetary is brighter than the center. A white and blue double star is nearby. It shows a small dark lane at high power and is definately not a 13th mag object as listed, I estimate 12.

Eagle Eye site S=7 T=7 13" 150X--pretty bright, pretty large, not brighter in the middle, elongated 1.8 X 1 in PA 165. There is a nice, easy to split, white and blue double star to the east of this planetary nebula. Ken Reeve's 20" f/5 light green in color, a bizarre shape, two rounded squares of nebulosity with a dark lane in the middle. The outer rim of the nebula is brigher than anything inside it. With averted vision a very faint loop of nebulosity extends away from the bright section toward the south. A unique object.


NGC 6469 Bright, pretty large, pretty rich and somewhat compressed, 26 stars counted at 100X. It can just be seen in the 11X80 finder. The observation above was from one of my best nights ever at the
telescope. At a site with 7200 ft. of elevation in the Central Mountains of Arizona. I rated the night as 8/10 for seeing and 10/10 for contrast. On a much poorer evening on the desert floor only about 50 miles from Phoenix, I saw this cluster as: pretty faint, pretty large and not compressed, not much. What a difference a two hour drive makes!

NGC 6469 Eagle Eye Rd. 13" S=6 T=7 after Moonset
150X--pretty bright, pretty large, considerably rich, 18 stars counted with fuzzy background haze, stars mag 9...12.


NGC 6494 (M 23) Bright, large and not compressed. At 100X it has chains of stars that form a pattern like the seats of a sports arena. Rose Bowl Cluster?
Buckeye 6" f/6 S=5, T=5 RFT viewing 75X (14mm Meade UWA) bright, large, not compressed, 43 stars counted in several curved lanes of stars. This cluster is evenly distributed, there is no central condensation. The cluster is about one third of the field and the stars are of mags 8 to 12.

NGC 6514 (M20) Very bright, very large, irregularly round, approximately 40 stars involved in a nebula that is criss-crossed by dark lanes at 135X. The Trifid is naked eye from even a moderately dark site. The UHC filter enhanced the nebulosity, but I like the view of this object better without the filter. The triple star in the center of the brightest section is HN 40, it is split at 165X and it two yellow and one light blue star embedded within the Trifid nebulosity.
With wide angle eyepiece, both Lagoon and Trifid fit in same field of view. The "trifid" marking is easily seen, even in the 6" f/6 and the "blue" section stands out nicely with averted vision on a nice night at Dugas.

Ultimate Star Party, McDonald Obs. Oct. 95, S=6, T=8, 24" f/5--
Trifid in 24" f/5 is gorgeous, the 27mm and UHC filter bring out both the upper and lower nebulosity, I cannot see color in them, but the two parts of the nebulae have a different appearance, maybe "sheen". That is obvious once I noticed it. The HN 20 double star is easily split, with 23 other stars within the nebula.

NGC 6520 Pretty bright, pretty large, pretty rich, compressed, 22 members at 165X. There is a nice orange star in the center. Dark nebula B86 is distinct on the west side and the dark nebula and the
cluster are about the same size.

36" f/5 TSP 96 T=8, S=6 A terrific view of this object. 36 stars counted in cluster, 5 vF stars at the edge of the dark nebula. One orange star in cluster and a few of the members are yellow. A bright edge or lip to the dark nebula. A great view of this area.

NGC 6522 Pretty bright, pretty large, and much brighter in the middle, round and very grainy at 135X.

NGC 6523 (M 8) Very bright, very, very large, somewhat compressed cluster with lots of nebulosity. With the 2" eyepiece that gives a one degree field with the 13", the entire field is nebulous and the dark lane that gives the Lagoon its' name is obvious. I counted 40 stars included within the cluster and there are another 50 stars among the outer parts of the nebula and 10 of the stars are within the dark lane. Going to 100X shows the west side of the nebulosity is brightest and adding the UHC makes the nebula grow 1.5 times in size. I don't like the view with the UHC filter because it dims the stars involved and that is a large part of the beauty of this area of the sky. The Lagoon is an obvious naked eye spot in the Milky Way, even on a mediocre evening. In the finder or 10X50 binoculars this area in spectacular, the Lagoon and Trifid fit in the same field with star chains and dark lanes winding their way through the entire field of view. This part of Sagittarius will be a favorite as long as people construct telescopes.

Camp 613 9/10 S+T great night, testing the 35mm Panoptic EP. With 2" UHC this is the best view of the Lagoon I have ever seen, at 60X in the 13" it is 80% of the field of view. The dark Lagoon is obvious and there are 38 stars within the nebulosity. The faint nebula off to the SE is seen easily. Both Lagoon and Trifid fit in field of view.

Binoculars 8X25--3 stars resolved, elongated 2X1 E-W, the eastern end in brighter. Obviously in front of dark Rift. 10X50--8 stars resolved, cluster on E side is easy. Averted vision makes it grow a lot. A lovely nebulosity, surrounded by darkness. 11X80--17 stars, brightest one is light orange. The nebula is easy, it gets much bigger with averted vision. The dark lane is thin at this low magnification, but easy to see. The cluster of stars is obvious and is on the west side of the nebula.

6" f/6 Dugas S=5 T=6 Beautiful glowing shell with dark lane from edge to edge. The brightest portion of the glow on the West side is a circular section with 6 stars involved, surrounded by a curving dark lane. The star cluster is on the SE side, there are 24 stars of mags 9...11. There are several stars within the dark lane, including a nice matched pair of 10th mag stars.


NGC 6528
Pretty bright, pretty large, bright in the middle at 100X.
It is paired next to NGC 6522, two nearly matched globulars afloat in a rich Milky Way field just at the tip of the spout of the Teapot.

NGC 6531 (M 21) Bright, pretty large, pretty rich, somewhat compressed, several bright members at 100X. I counted 48 stars at 135X.
Buckeye 6" f/6 S=5, T=5 RFT viewing 75X (14mm Meade UWA) bright, pretty large, not compressed, 32 stars counted including a bright pair near the middle of the cluster. The cluster takes up about one fifth of the field. It is not compressed, actually somewhat scattered.

NGC 6537 Pretty bright, very small, not brighter in the middle, round, about twice the size of the Airy disk at 220X.

NGC 6540 Pretty faint, small, round, not rich, very compressed at 165X. Three stars are resolved constantly and another 3 or 4 come and go with the seeing at 220X. This very compact cluster demands high power.

NGC 6544 Pretty bright, pretty small, round, very compressed, 7 stars resolved at 220X. Averted vision makes it double in size.

NGC 6546 Bright, large, rich, compressed. I counted 55 stars with a very fuzzy backround and many chains of stars at 100X.

NGC 6553 Bright, pretty large, much compressed, round, about 4 stars resolved at 135X. Averted vision helps. There is an 11th mag star on the NW side.

NGC 6554 No definate cluster at 100X. This object is marked as nonexistant and it may be the truth.

NGC 6558 Pretty bright, pretty small, round and has a very bright middle. I could resolve 10 members at 220X.

NGC 6559 Faint, large, elongated E-W, double star involved at 100X.
This nebula can be seen without the UHC filter, but is much more obvious with the filter in place. The nebula is brightest on the south side.

NGC 6561 Bright, large, scattered group of 26 stars, including a small asterism of 4 stars at 100X. The four star asterism is marked on Uranometria chart 339.

NGC 6563 Pretty bright, pretty large, round and greenish at 165X.
My source says that this object is 13th magnitude. I disagree, it seems more like 12th to me.

NGC 6565 Pretty bright, small, very little elongated 1.2 X 1 in PA 165 at 285X. This planetary is light green and no central star was seen at any power.

NGC 6567 Faint, very small, round at 220X. This small planetary could be seen at 150X, but higher powers made it stand out better. There is a 13th mag star about 1 arcmin east of the nebula.

NGC 6568 Pretty bright, large, pretty rich, somewhat compressed, 33 stars within 10 arcmin at 100X, a nice globular of pretty faint stars.

NGC 6569 Bright, large, round, resolved 12 stars with a very grainy backround at 165X.

NGC 6578 Faint, small, round, no central star even at 320X. This greenish planetary was recognized at 100X, it is about three times the size of the Airy disk. This observation was on a night I rated 8/10 for seeing and 10/10 for transparency.

NGC 6583 Pretty faint, pretty small, round, compressed, not rich, counted 12 stars at 220X.

NGC 6603 Bright, pretty large, very rich, very compressed, 33 stars counted at 165X. Nice reddish-orange 10th mag star on south side.

NGC 6613 (M 18) Bright, pretty large, not rich, not compressed at 60X. This coarse cluster is seen in the 11X80 finder and I can resolve 15 pretty bright stars.

NGC 6618 (M 17) Very bright, large, irregularly elongated at 100X.
This nebula has received a variety of names over the years. The Swan section is the brightest and most obvious section on the south side. Adding the UHC filter brings out a dimmer portion of the nebula to the northeast. The addition of this fainter part makes the entire nebula take on the shape of a Horseshoe. Putting in the UHC also shows off the fact that thin dark lanes cut across the bright nebula in several places, the filter raises the contrast between the bright and dark areas. M 17 is one of my favorites, there is lots of detail to see at a variety of power and filter combinations. It is just naked eye on a good night and the finder or a pair of binoculars will show the nebula afloat in a rich Milky Way field.

Ultimate Star Party, McDonald Obs. S=6, T=8, 36" f/5-- M 17 with 20mm and UHC shows at least as much detail as any shot from the 200 inch. 17 stars involved, dark lanes cut the "checkmark" into sections; many bright pieces of nebula extend far beyond the center of the nebulosity out into the Milky Way. Two lovely delicate chains of stars in the "head of the Swan".

36" f/5 TSP 96 S=6, T=8 20mm Nagler Dark lanes cut it to pieces, the "eye of the Swan", a lovely orange star in the hook feature is excellent and there are several other stars embedded within the nebula. Small pieces of neby away from the bright region are obvious.

NGC 6620 Faint, very, very small, not brighter in the middle and round at 220X. This tiny greenish disk is about 3 times the size of the seeing disk on a good night.

NGC 6624 Bright, pretty large, much compressed and round. It has a very bright middle and is resolved into 18 stars against a grainy backround at 165X. This a nice globular that doesn't get observed often.

NGC 6626 (M 28) Bright, pretty large, round and has a very bright middle. It is easily resolved at 100X.

NGC 6629 Pretty bright, small and a little elongated at 220X. It is greenish and will reveal a central star with direct vision at 220X. It exhibits some of the "blinking effect"--the central star is much more prominent with averted vision than looking directly at it, so it will blink on and off as you look at the nebula then look away. This small planetary is about three times the size of the Airy disk on a night I rated 7/10 for seeing.

NGC 6637 (M 69) Very bright, large, round and has a much brighter middle. This bright globular can be seen in the 11X80 finder. At 165X and has ragged edges and many very faint stars are resolved across a smooth globe. I can also resolve 15 pretty bright stars in the central section. This very nice cluster looks like M 22 moved to the south.

NGC 6638 Pretty bright, pretty small, round and much brighter in the middle. I could it to look very grainy, but it would not resolve at any magnification up to 320X.

NGC 6642 Pretty bright, pretty small globular that is somewhat elongated and very compressed with a bright middle. I was able to resolve 5 stars at 135X and 10 stars at 220X.

NGC 6644 Pretty bright, very small, round, bright middle with a stellar nucleus of about 13th mag at 285X. This planetary is about three time the size of the Airy disk.

NGC 6645 Bright, large, rich, pretty compressed, 49 stars counted at 100X. This cluster is in a bizarre "donut" shape with no stars in the center of this grouping. There are lots of dim members.

NGC 6652 Pretty bright, pretty small, much compressed, much brighter in the middle and little elongated N-S at 220X. This globular was resolved into 8 stars and it grows with averted vision. It can just be spotted with the 11X80 finder.
Eagle Eye site 13" S=6 T=7
150X--pretty bright, pretty small, pretty much compressed, much brighter middle, elongated 1.5 X 1 in PA 0.
220X--3 stars are resolved and grainy edges to this globular, all in a rich field of view.
330X--3 stars are held steady, another 2 or 3 come and go with the seeing, they litterally wink on and off. Averted vision makes a very large difference, averted vision will double the size of this object.

NGC 6656 (M 22) Very bright, very large, very rich, very compressed and much brighter in the middle at 135X. This magnificent globular has a blazing core and many streamers and coils of stars which make
their way outward through the cluster. It is second only to Omega Centauri and 47 Tucana when it comes to globulars. I only got a short glimpse at 47 Tuc when I was in Austalia, but we got to study Omega Centauri near the zenith with a 12.5" f/6. M22 isn't quite that spectacular, but it is a close second. Ultimate Star Party
Oct.22, 95 T-8/10, S-6/10, 36" f/5-- M22 with 27mm shows a glorious cluster with an overwhelming number of stars. There are several dark markings with 5 arcmins of the center of the cluster and three small groupings of 10 pretty faint stars that are clusters within a cluster.

6" f/6 Dugas WOW 48 stars counted with 8.8mm. This globular more than doubles with averted vision. A beautiful, sparkling sea urchin with shimmering spines.

NGC 6681 (M 70) Bright, large, round and has a very bright middle at 100X. This globular has 10 stars resolved at 220X and there is a curved band of stars within the cluster that form an arc from the core to the NW edge, in a PA of about 45 degrees. This chain of stars is brighter than the general glow of the cluster. M 70 really grows with averted vision. It is easy in the 11X80 finder.

NGC 6715 (M 54) Bright, pretty large, round, much, much brighter in the middle at 165X. Resolved 5 stars at 220X. It could be seen in the 11X80 finder.


NGC 6717 Pretty faint, small, round, grainy at 165X. Going to 285X will not resolve with globular, but it does show three stars very near to the cluster, two on the east and one on the west side.
Camp 613 S=7, T=8 13" 100X--pretty faint, pretty small, irregularly round, not brighter in the middle, one star resolved. This glob is south of a very nice yellow-orange star, v2 Sag.
220X--Nicely resolved, 5 stars seen, averted vision makes it grow, interresting bright star and globular in same high power Milky Way field of view.


NGC 6723 Bright, large, round, much brighter in the middle, about 30 stars resolved at the edges at 135X. There are several long chains of stars that wind their way out from the edges. This very nice southern globular was easy to spot in the 10X50 binoculars.

NGC 6774 Bright, very large, little compressed, 48 stars resolved at 60X. The entire cluster in about 30 arcmin in size but there are several small grouping within the cluster.

NGC 6809 Bright, very large, irregularly round, very rich, somewhat compressed, little brighter in the middle. I counted 67 stars resolved at 165X. There are some dark lanes winding through the cluster.

NGC 6818 Bright, pretty small and little elongated. It is a lovely, light green at all powers. This planetary was obviously non-stellar at 100X. Going up to 320X, it looks somewhat like the CBS eye, with a subtle central bright spot that was never stellar. Three dim stars surround the nebula.

Ultimate Star Party, McDonald Obs., Oct. 95, S=7, T=9, 36" f/5--
NGC 6818 36" 28mm seen immediately, round, light green and central stars seen. With 16mm low contrast detail, a few dark thin markings, nice medium green color.


NGC 6822 Very faint, very large, elongated 2 X 1 in PA 0, not brighter in the middle at 60X. With averted vision this low surface brightness galaxy was very mottled. This object was more obvious in the 11X80 finder than it was in the 13" with a 2" eyepiece.

Ultimate Star Party, McDonald Obs., Oct. 95, S=7, T=9, 36" f/5--
NGC 6822 36" 28mm wide field, central 1/3 of field, elongated 1.8X1 N-S, two globs on north side separated by 3 arcmin, very grainy.

NGC 6864 (M 75) Bright, pretty large, round, much, much brighter in the middle at 165X. This globular has a blazing core and is very mottled, but I could not resolve a star in it on a 7/10 night, even with powers up to 270X.

NGC 6878 Very faint, pretty small, round, very gradually brighter in the middle at 150X.

NGC 6890 Faint, small, round, very gradually brighter middle at 150X.

NGC 6902 Faint, pretty small, little elongated 1.5 X 1 in PA 0, little brighter in the middle at 150X.

NEW 5 Faint, pretty small, elongated 2 X 1 in PA 60, brighter middle at 150X, averted vision makes it grow larger. This galaxy is from the list in Burnham's.

IC 4725 (M 25) Very bright, very large, pretty rich and somewhat compressed. I counted 43 members at 60X, I could pick out 11 stars involved using the 11X80 finder. U SGR is a nice orange variable star on the west side of this cluster. There is a dark area of missing stars in the very center of the cluster.
Buckeye 6" f/6 S=5, T=5 RFT viewing 75X (14mm Meade UWA) bright, large, not compresssed, 38 stars counted including several lovely, delicate groupings of 11th and 12th mag stars. There is a light orange star on the south side of the cluster. This cluster takes up about one fourth of the field. It is just barely a naked eye object.

Mel 197 (M 24) Extremely bright, extremely large, elongated 2X1 in PA 45, very rich, very compressed at 60X. The Small Sagittarius Star Cloud does not quite fit in the field of view on my widest eyepiece for the 13". M 24 has been mistaken for the small cluster NGC 6603 for many years. Actually, the entire Star cloud is M 24.
This is made obvious by Messier's notes. Many good views can be had with binoculars. The dense starfield sparkles and shimmers, several dark lanes and patches stand out from the gathering of stars. The most prominent dark area is B 92 on the NW edge.

Buckeye 6" f/6 S=5, T=5 RFT viewing 40X (22mm Panoptic) extremely bright, extremely large, extremely rich, a huge oval of stars, obviously naked eye. 56 stars are counted in the central 10% of the star cloud, so there are about 500 stars resolved across the face of this unique object. Many lovely, delicate chains of stars criss-cross the body of the Star Cloud. There are two dark patches on the northern edge, both are easy in the 6". NGC 6633 is involved and at low power this cluster is just a fuzzy spot with a bright, compressed core. There is a dark orange star at the edge of this compressed cluster. The entire star cloud is over two fields of view in the RFT, making it at least 3 degrees in total size.

Cherry Rd. S=6/10 T=8. Nice night. Naked eye--An obvious, elongated E-W 2.5X1, somewhat brighter in the middle and wider on the west side. Averted vision makes it grow. 8X25 binocs--17 stars involved, the dark "eyes" are just seen, the Star cloud is nicely framed by the bright and dark of the Milky Way with the small binoculars. 10X50 binocs--56 stars resolved, cluster stands out fairly well, several nice chains of stars. The dark eyes are obvious on the north side of the Star cloud. This silvery, elongated star grouping is lovely. Several dark lanes in the Milky Way are nearby.

6" f/6 Dugas S=5 T=6 22mm Panoptic WOW! fabulous, sparkling diamonds on black velvet. Overwhelming numbers of stars in curving chains with dark lanes cutting through them. A fascinating interplay of stars and dark lanes on the SW end.

B 86 is a DARK Barnard Nebula right next to NGC 6520. It has an hourglass shape and is about 5 minutes in size. There is a lovely orange star in the field. Don't miss this very nice area.

Cherry Rd. 6" f/6 S=7 T=8 25X--just see the cluster as a fuzzy spot. 65X--a great view, the cluster has 7 stars easily resolved and another 5 appear with averted vision. The cluster is faint, small, very compressed and not rich. It is on the east side of the Ink Spot (B86), an obvious, elongated dark nebula. The field also includes an orange star on the side of the dark nebula opposite this small star cluster.

Ultimate Star Party, McDonald Obs., Oct. 95, S=7, T=9, 36" f/5--
Barnard 86 in Sgr NGC 6520; cluster is almost spiral shape of stars that spray out from the middle, lovely yellow star across from dark Ink Spot, the dark neb. Has NO stars in it in 36" with 27mm. WOW. 48 stars in opn.

B 92 Large, prominent dark nebula on the NW edge of the Small Sagittarius Star Cloud. It can easily be seen in 10X50 binoculars.

Eagle Eye s=6 T=7 13" f/5.6 100X--the dark nebula is about half the field of view, it is elongated 1.5X1 in PA 0. It is very opaque, only one star of about 10th mag. is seen, it is in the center of the dark area. There are no other stars seen within the boundaries of B92. There are several thin dark lanes that streach out from the dark oval into the Star Cloud, they are mostly going E-W.

B 93 another dark area on the north side of M 24.

Eagle Eye s=6 T=7 13" f/5.6 100X--also about half the field of view, elongated 2X1 in PA 20. The central area is very dark and is surrounded by a medium grey area that has some faint stars shining through it. This dark region is surrounded by several little star groupings of 8 to 10 stars embedded in the Star Cloud. The dark fingers are also noticed here.


PK 15- 3.1 Sun Valley Parkway S=6, T=6 13" f/5.6 330X-Could not
find a non-stellar object at this position on a pretty good night.

PK 17-10.1 Camp 613 100X just suspected. 220X show it as very faint, pretty small, round, not brighter in the middle, about 30 arcsec in size. Averted vision helps a lot, never held steady, even with the UHC filter in place.

Multiple Stars

Eta SGR Not a clean split at any power up to 320X, however both parts of the elongated figure 8 are yellow.

Mu SGR Split at 100X, this is marked as a double star, but I see a white primary and two comes, both blue, on either side.

54 SGR Split at 100X, yellow and light blue. The data for this star shows it as a double, but there is a faint tertiary comes.

h 619 is yellow and blue, split at 165X.

h 5003 is yellow and blue, an easy split at 100X.

RS SGR is the star of the show. I see five components, two white, two light blue and one orange. They are easily split at 165X.


Red Stars

AQ SGR is an N spectra star. It is a lovely orange with a coppery sheen, in a pretty field at 100X.

SS SGR Not very bright, but a deep orange color at 100X.

V 1942 in SGR Nice dark orange at 100X.