Archive for September 2011

NGC 6819 “Foxhead” Open Cluster in Cygnus

September 4, 2011

A 102 mm refractor at low power presents NGC 6819 as a small irregular cluster with two rows of brighter stars. One row or chain is oriented north, and the other NE. The cluster is located in a star rich area, but is easily seen and recognized.

The 10-inch at 208x shows about twenty five stars forming two star chains, with a prominent double at the SE edge. The cluster has many fainter stars that could not be seen, which gives a slight nebulous appearance. Many references mention that 80 stars can be seen with a 10-inch scope, within a 10′ area. However, don’t be too disappointed if your count is not this great…there are many faint stars that do not even show up on some photographs. I would sure be interested if anyone can count fifty or more stars in this most interesting open cluster, using a 10-inch, or even a larger scope.

All observations were made from my moderately light polluted backyard located in the foothills of western North Carolina.  RI