Sagittarius the Archer
The Greek legends tell us that Sagittarius is a centaur, half human, half horse. He was the son of Saturn and Plyilyra and is said to have changed himself into a horse to escape his jealous wife, Rhea.
For the Observer
The Stars of Summer
Zeta Sagittari, Ascella (19h 03m -29°53') is a 2.6 magnitude blue giant class A2 star. It is a double system, the companion being also a blue star of magnitude 3.2. The pair are about 130 light years distant.
M8 (NGC 6523) the Lagoon Nebula (18h 01.6m -24°20') Possibly the finest diffuse nebulae. It has a magnitude of 5.0 and is visible to the anked eye.
M17 (NGC 6618) the Omega Nebula (18h 18.0m -16°12') a diffuse nebulae of magnitude 6.0 and therefore easy to spot. There are several individual stars visible, however they have no physical connection with the nebulae.
M18 (NGC 6613) (18h 17.0m -17°09') This is a small galactic star cluster of magnitude 8. It is a small cluster with only about 12 stars.
M20 (NGC 6514) the Triffid Nebula (17h 58.9m -23°02') This is one of the best know of the nebulae next to the Orion nebula. There is 3 conspicuous irregular patches with dark lanes running in between. It is easy to detect in an 8 or 10 inch scope.
M21 (NGC 6531) (18h 01.8m -22°30') is a galactic cluster of about 50 stars with a magntiude of 7. Near the center is a conspicuous pair of yellowish stars.
M22 (NGC 6656) (18h 33.3m -23°58') is a beautiful globular star cluster. With a magnitude of 6.0 it is easy to spot.
M23 (NGC 6494) (17h 54.0m -19°01') A nice galactic star cluster of magnitude 7. There are about 100 stars in the group from 9 to 13th magnitude.
M24 (NGC 6603) (18h 15.5m -18°27') is a loose galactic cluster of about 50 stars. There is much star dust in the cluster, making it a challenge to resolve in a 4 inch scope.
M25 (IC 4725) (18h 28.8m -19°17') is a scattered galactic star cluster of about 50 stars. The magnitude is 6.0.
M28 (NGC 6626) (18h 21.5m -24°54') is a compact globular star cluster of magnitude 8. It is extremely compressed, with stars of 14th and higher magnitude, very difficult to resolve.
M54 (NGC 6715) (18h 52.0m -30°32') is a small but bright globular cluster found quite easily, even though its magnitude is 9. It is very compact in the center, where it is brightest. Individual stars are nearly impossible to resolve even in 8 inch scopes.
M55 (NGC 6809) (19h 36.9m -31°03') a large and loose structured globular cluster with a magnitude of 7. Small scopes will show individual stars.
M69 (NGC 6637) (18h 28.1m -32°23') a small globular star cluster of magnitude 7.5 It is almost impossible to resolve except in larger scopes.
M70 (NGC 6681) (18h 40.0m -32°21') A small globular star cluster of magnitude 8.
M75 (NGC 6864) (20h 03.2m -22°04') a small but rich globular star cluster of magnitude 8. It is extremely compact and individual stars are resolvable only in larger scopes.
Copyright © 1995 - 2003
Kathy Miles, Author, and Chuck Peters, Systems Administrator