Messier Objects

M77: Galaxy (Cetus) RA: 02h 42.7m / DEC: -00° 00'.8
Instrument: 10-inch Starfinder

M77 is a Seyfert galaxy residing 52' east-southeast from 4.0 magnitude Delta Ceti. It's bright at magnitude 8.9 and has a high surface brightness. The sketch at left presents the view in my 10-inch Starfinder Newtonian. M77 features a bright stellar core. The core is encased within a 3' diameter inner bright region and a 5'x4' outer halo. No wonder Messier briefly mistook this galaxy for a comet. NGC 1055 can be found 31' north-northwest of M77.

Instrument: 18-inch Obsession

In the 18-inch Obsession at 272X (8.8-mm UWA w/ Paracorr), the inner core and spiral arms show more detail. The galaxy covers a 2'.7 by 2'.2 area in my sketch. A bright star, about 9th magnitude, shines 1'.4 ESE of the stellar core region. The stellar core is framed by an oval zone roughly 30" by 15" in size. This inner core is aligned northeast-to-southwest. M77 hints at her spiral structure by displaying subtle brightenings to the north-northwest and also to the south. At times the north-norhwest edge appears almost serrated or feathered. A stellaring is detected approx. 30" southwest of the core. This is either an HII region or a foreground star.

M76 M78


Navigation Image, see text links below Web Links Glossary Sketching Astrophotography Planetary Observing Deep-sky Observing Getting Started About Cosmic Voyage Home

Home | About Cosmic Voyage | Getting Started | Deep-sky Observing | Planetary Observing | Astrophotography | Sketching | Glossary | Web Links


Layout, design & revisions © W. D. Ferris
Comments and Suggestions:

Revised: November 26, 2005 [WDF]