Cline Observatory Double and Multiple Star List – Compiled By Tom English; Consisting of 25 Doubles and 5 Triples

Cline Observatory Double Star List – 25double-5triple

     Tom English has put together an excellent list of twenty-five doubles and five multiple stars, which at first glance would seem to be compiled for only those new to this facet of amateur astronomy.  However, for those of us who have enjoyed double star observing for decades, we know there is no such thing as a beginners list.

     Double star lists may be compiled of the most difficult pairs due to their close separations and sometimes with unequal magnitudes, or those with wide separations and beautiful contrasting colors.  It was the latter which coined the name: “The jewels of the night sky.”

     This list contains some beautiful and interesting doubles, all of which can be observed with a small telescope.  

     The famous double star, Epsilon Bootis is probably the most difficult double on the list, which has always required at least a 4-inch refractor for me.  Many observers have reported seeing the companion to Epsilon with a 3-inch aperture.    

     Are you stressed, too tired to take out that big telescope, but would like to enjoy an hour or so of relaxation under the night sky?  So….why not a 60 mm refractor or a 3-inch reflector?   And you don’t have to worry too much about a bright moon or ambient lights as both have little effect on “most” double or multiple stars.     

     Want to become a better double star observer?  I’ve listed a few things as following which have helped me over the years:  

     I’ve never been able to observe through a telescope eyepiece and stand at the same time, much less attempt to separate a very close pair.     

     And for those extremely close and difficult doubles, an eyepatch is necessary for the non-observing eye.  

     It’s important to relax the facial muscles and “absolutely” essential to hold the observing eye very still and on-axis….hence the need to be seated.  


Roger Ivester  


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