Archive for December 16, 2018

NGC 1514 – Planetary Nebula In Taurus – the “Crystal Ball Nebula” January 2019 Observer’s Challenge Object

December 16, 2018

JANUARY 2019 OBSERVERS CHALLENGE – NGC-1514

Image by Mario Motta from Massachusetts using a 32-inch reflector: 

NGC1514-cNB

 

I’ve observed NGC 1514 thrice with my 15-inch f/4.5 reflector, and it’s wonderfully complex.  The sketch was made at 216× with a UHC filter.  I may not have gotten all the lumps and bumps in exactly the right place, but it gives the general impression.   Sue French  

Inverted pencil sketch:  SF

N1514 neg

Positive pencil sketch:  SF 

N1514 pos

 

Pencil sketch by Roger Ivester

NGC 1514

Inverted pencil sketch

Rogers NGC-1514 Inverted

Seeing was excellent, but with a 74% illuminated moon.  I set my 10-inch reflector in the backyard, using my house to shield the direct light from the moon.  Having no idea what to expect under these conditions, I started out with 57x, and without a filter.  It was easy to see the 9th magnitude central star, with some faint surrounding nebulosity.  I then went to 208x and a UHC filter, and the nebula really came alive!  The only two stars visible in the field, are two ~8th mag. stars…one to the north and the other south.  The nebula has greater concentration to the north, which can seen in my sketch.  The edges are irregular and uneven, and the nebula has a very subtle N-S elongation.   

Roger Ivester 

                                                                                   

 

NGC 1514 in Taurus is sometimes called the “Crystal Ball Nebula,”  But I have coined the name “Herschel’s Revelation” as being far more significant.  This is the object that convinced Sir William that nebulae were real and not, as was the belief then, just masses of unresolved stars.  His profound insight came at seeing the clear separation of the surrounding nebula from the obvious central star.  Yet another of Herschel’s many amazing observations based solely on the visual appearance of an object in his telescopes.  Jim Mullaney