(IAAC) Obj: Hickson 31 (galaxy group) Inst: 17.5" f/4.4

Observer: Steve Gottlieb
Your skills: Advanced
Date and UT of Observation: 1997-2-8/9, 3:00-9:00 UT
Location: Sierra Nevada foothills, CA USA (37N)
Site classification: rural
Limiting magnitude: 6.5
Seeing: 1"
Moon up: no
Instrument: 17.5" f/4.4 (Dob)
Magnification: 100x, 220x, 280x
Filters used: None
Object: Various Hickson Groups
Category: Compact galaxy groups
Constellation: Eridanus, Orion, Lepus, Cancer, Leo
These observations were recently made while waiting for Hale-Bopp to rise!
Included are detailed notes of several challenging Hickson groups including
Hickson 30, 31, 32, 34 and 37 and 38.  Observing aids included Hickson's
CCD images from the Canada-France-Hawaii telescope, Megastar-generated
finder charts and digitized images downloaded from SkyView.
Hickson 31a = N1741
05 01.6 -04 15
17.5:brightest of three in Hickson 31 (merged with Hickson 31c).  Fairly
faint, fairly small, elongated 2:1 ~E-W after extended viewing, bright
core.  Located 0.9' NW of a mag 12 star.  N1741 has an irregular appearance
and is intermittently resolved with a faint "knot" = Hickson 31c visible
with concentration at the W end.  IC 399 is 2.3' SE but not a member of the
Hickson group.
Hickson 31b
05 01.6 -04 16
17.5:Hickson 31b was a threshold object, visible with averted vision only
40" SW of N1741 = Hickson 31a.  No details visible and elongation not seen.
Hickson 31c
05 01.6 -04 15
17.5:Hickson 31c is the fainter component of a merged interacting pair with
Hickson 31a.  At moments, this component seemed resolved at the W end.
Located just 1' NW of a mag 12 star.
IC 399
05 01.7 -04 17
17.5:very faint, very small, round, 15" diameter, low even surface
brightness.  This galaxy is located just 2.3' SW of N1741 and 2.5' SW of a
mag 12 star on a line, although it is not a group member.
Steve Gottlieb
Albany, CA