(IAAC) Fwd: McNeil's Nebula with a 16-inch [New amateur discovery]

Just a quick note: I've been somewhat remiss in forwarding any
of the recent BLIZZARD of postings on "McNeil's Nebula"... This
is a bit of variable nebulosity, recently discovered by amateur
Jay McNeil with a small amateur scope and CCD, in the same field
of view with bright reflection nebula M78, in Orion!

And best of all, there are now several confirmations that this
exciting curiosity is accessible to VISUAL observers also, in
mid- to larger-sized amateur scopes. Below are links to a pair
of fine finder photos, from well-known amateur Tom Polakis:



I'll be giving this one a try the next time I'm out, for sure!

Note: Forwarded without permission of the authors.

Clear skies!
Lew Gramer

-----Original Message-----
From: Alan Whitman <...>
To: <amastro...>
Cc: <rascals....>; <okanaganastronomy...>
Sent: Friday, February 13, 2004 2:47 AM
Subject: [RASCals] McNeil's Nebula with a 16-inch

>I put my 16-inch back into service tonight after months of just
>with 8-inch scopes, to hunt for Jay McNeil's discovery. At 152x (a 12mm
>Radian eyepiece with a 24' field of view) I had repeated glimpses of
>McNeil's Nebula. I only saw one star of the adjacent pair and the star
>tougher than the nebula. Many of these images that we have been
directed to
>show two small nebulosities (both Herbig-Haro objects?) immediately
>of Jay's nebula. I could see the brighter and more southerly one,
>about 6' SSW of McNeil's Nebula, and it was rather easier to see than
>McNeil's Nebula.
>I didn't try higher powers because when McNeil's Nebula was centred in
>24' field of view of the 12mm Radian there were barely enough faint
>stars visible to orientate myself and I didn't think that the 8mm
>with only a 16' field of view would show enough stars in that
>area to be able to navigate. (And Orion was about to enter my wife's
>birch trees which most things do shortly after crossing the meridian.)
>It was an enjoyable chase. This was also my first view of NGCs 2071 and
>2064 since I usually avoid reflection nebulae. I have to gently
>with Tom Polakis who said: "If your scope will show NGC 2064, it will
>probably also show the new nebula." NGC 2064 is considerably easier
>McNeil's Nebula.
>Alan Whitman
> Tom Polakis wrote:
> >Date: Wed, 11 Feb 2004 22:19:22
> >From: Tom Polakis <...>
> >Subject: Finder Chart for McNeil's Nebula
> >I have thrown together a finder chart for McNeil's Nebula in M78. If
> >scope will show NGC 2064, it will probably also show the new nebula.
> >Web-sized chart is at:
> > http://www.psiaz.com/polakis/deepsky/mcneils_finder_chart_small.jpg
> >And if you want it to print out okay, I have resampled the image to
> >8.5x11 at 200dpi. You can download this file, and print it from
> >graphics viewing software.
> >
> > http://www.psiaz.com/polakis/deepsky/mcneils_finder_chart.jpg
> >
> >I am using Bob Fera's recent image with his permission. It is rotated
> >north is up. Finding M78 is left as an exercise for the reader.
> >
> >Tom

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