|NGC 2438: Planetary Nebula (Puppis) RA: 07h 41.8m / DEC: -14° 44'.1|
Instrument: 10-inch Starfinder
This planetary nebula combines with the Messier open cluster, M46, to form one of the most observed deep-sky duos in the heavens. Common sense might suggest the nebula belongs to the cluster. However, NGC 2438 is a foreground object and not associated with that stellar family. My drawing captures the view in the 10-inch Newtonian at 82X. The planetary appears as a 60" diameter annulus near the northern edge of the cluster. The 17th magnitude central star is invisible to moderate aperture. You'll find NGC 2438 and M46 just 1.3 degrees east-southeast of another Messier cluster, M47.
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Revised: January 20, 2003 [WDF]