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Galaxies that can be seen with the naked eye

  1. May 23, 2009 #1
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andromeda_Galaxy" [Broken]


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triangulum_Galaxy" [Broken]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Messier_81" [Broken]


    I've only seen M31 with the naked eye. If I look at M33 through my 8 times 40 bino, then it doesn't look like something I could ever see with the naked eye.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. May 23, 2009 #2

    russ_watters

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    Key to M33 being "exceptionally good" conditions. When I was in the Navy, I saw M31 with the naked eye, but even under perfect conditions (for sea level, which is complete sky transparency and complete darkness), I could not see M33. For M33, you probably have to be isolated and on a mountain.
     
  4. May 23, 2009 #3

    Vanadium 50

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    Likewise - in the Navy, M31 was easy. M33 took binoculars.
     
  5. May 24, 2009 #4
    http://www.skyandtelescope.com/resources/darksky/3304011.html" [Broken]

    I guess I would have to rate the skies here at class 5 to 6 :grumpy:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  6. May 24, 2009 #5

    George Jones

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    I can see this from the street in front of my apartment building, streetlights notwithstanding.
    Nope.
    Nope. Saw this with my 15 x 70 binos a few weeks ago.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  7. May 24, 2009 #6
    Perhaps I should try to see M33 when it is close to the Zenith. So, perhaps late in the Summer or early in the Autumn around 3 am when it both high in the sky and there aren't many lights in the neighborhood.

    I know it looks faint when I look at with with my binos but then I usually look at it when it isn't that high above the horizon.
     
  8. May 27, 2009 #7
    http://www.maa.clell.de/Messier/E/Xtra/Supp/m81naked.txt" [Broken]

    Since then, http://www.maa.clell.de/Messier/E/m081.html" [Broken]

     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  9. May 27, 2009 #8
    You all are obviously in the North. What about the Magellanic Clouds? These dwarf galaxies are very bright in the southern skies.
     
  10. May 28, 2009 #9

    Vanadium 50

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    There's also a southern hemisphere? Who knew? :wink:
     
  11. May 28, 2009 #10
    Forgive me if this is a silly question, but how do you know where to look? (Same holds for the other planets in our solar system, I can never find them/distinguish between them and stars).
     
  12. May 28, 2009 #11
    You need to look at a star chart first. Does this pattern of stars look familiar:
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  13. May 28, 2009 #12
    Big Dipper?

    (Oh, I probably also need to mention that I'm in the Southern Hemisphere :redface: )
     
  14. May 28, 2009 #13

    turbo

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    Stars are all apparent point-sources to us, due to their distance, so they "twinkle", especially when the atmosphere is unstable (called "poor seeing"). In contrast, Mars, Venus, Jupiter, and Saturn (the brighter, easier-to-find planets) will look quite steady compared to the stars.
     
  15. May 28, 2009 #14

    jim mcnamara

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    M31 no problem.

    M33 only at 13100 ft elevation Truchas Peak NM - above ~40% of the atmosphere at that elevation. And it was faint. Binoculars work fine down at lower elevations. So Russ is probably right - isolated and way up there.

    This is a cool graphic: Messier objects
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Messier.all.750pix.jpg [Broken]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  16. May 29, 2009 #15
    Cheers for that turbo-1, that will definitely make it easier.
     
  17. Jun 10, 2009 #16

    ideasrule

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    "Forgive me if this is a silly question, but how do you know where to look?"

    When I have to find a galaxy, I use a star chart. It's not hard at all after you learn a few asterisms/constellations, like the Big Dipper, or Gemini. For the planets, it's usually very obvious which one's which; the stupendously, unbelievably bright one is always Venus, the red one is Mars, the yellowish one is either Jupiter or Saturn (I remember where in the sky each one is). Mercury is hard to see if you're not looking for it, and the other planets can't be seen without a telescope.
     
  18. Sep 5, 2009 #17
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