Monday, June 15, 2009

Observing Challenge: Delta Cygni

Located in the constellation Cygnus at RA: 19h 44m 58.52s Dec: +45° 07' 50.6", Delta forms the tip of the western portion of Cygnus the Swan's wing and is very easily placed in the night sky for routine viewing in June around 10:30pm and onward. Oddily enough, given the 2.7 magnitude, Delta lacks a proper name. Around 11,250 AD, Delta will be the North Star.

In a quality 3-4 inch Refractor, you should be able to resolve Delta into two distinct pairs.
The challenge here of course is the magnitude differential in the companion. It is a mere 6.3 magnitude. The Antares 105mm Refractor split this without a whole lot of effort in the 223X power range but became very apparent when that image was barlowed to 447X. Generally, this would be a difficult power to work with, but the steadiness was slightly above average. At this power, the companion lay outside the first concentric ring in the Refractor.

Good luck and let me know if you were able to split it!

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