“Just So Science” – The Winter Wonders | Just So Science Scorpius Rising As we quickly approach the middle of Winter, are also treated to both the best observing conditions of the year (when its not raining that is!) and a plethora of gorgeous sights up in the night sky.
Butterfly Cluster The Butterfly Cluster (cataloged as Messier 6 or M6, and as NGC 6405) is an open cluster of stars in the constellation of Scorpius. Its name derives from the vague resemblance of its shape to a butterfly. The first astronomer to record the Butterfly Cluster's existence was Giovanni Battista Hodierna in 1654.
Messier 7 Messier 7 or M7, also designated NGC 6475 and sometimes known as the Ptolemy Cluster, is an open cluster of stars in the constellation of Scorpius. The cluster is easily detectable with the naked eye, close to the "stinger" of Scorpius (also called Scorpion). With a declination of -34.8°, it is the southernmost Messier object.
Messier 80 (also known as M80 or NGC 6093) is a globular cluster in the constellation Scorpius. It was discovered by Charles Messier in 1781. M80 is located midway between α Scorpii (Antares) and β Scorpii in a field in the Milky Way that is rich in nebulae. It can be viewed with modest amateur telescopes as a mottled ball of light. With an apparent diameter of about 10' and at an estimated distance of 32,600 light-years, M80's spatial diameter is about 95 light-years. It contains several hundred thousand stars, and is among the more densely populated globular clusters in the Milky Way Galaxy. Messier 80
Scorpius Scorpius, sometimes known as Scorpio, is one of the constellations of the zodiac. Its name is Latin for scorpion, and its symbol is Notable features The constellation Scorpius as it can be seen by naked eye (with constellation lines drawn in). AlltheSky.com
Antares (α Scorpii, α Sco, Alpha Scorpii) is a red supergiant star in the Milky Way Galaxy and the sixteenth brightest star in the nighttime sky. It is sometimes listed as 15th brightest, depending on how the two brighter components of the Capella quadruple star system are counted. Each of those two separately is brighter than Antares, but all four Capellan stars are seen by the unaided eye as one point of light, and they are thus sometimes counted as one. Along with Aldebaran, Regulus, and Fomalhaut, Antares comprises the group known as the 'Royal stars of Persia'. Antares
NGC 6302, also called the Bug Nebula, Butterfly Nebula, is a bipolar planetary nebula in the constellation Scorpius. The structure in the nebula is among the most complex ever observed in planetary nebulae. The spectrum of NGC 6302 shows that its central star is one of the hottest stars in the galaxy, with a surface temperature in excess of 200,000 K, implying that the star from which it formed must have been very large (cf. PG 1159 star). NGC 6302
NGC 6334 Coordinates: 17h 19m 58s, −35° 57′ 47″ NGC 6334 (also known as the Cat's Paw Nebula, Bear Claw Nebula and Gum 64) is an emission nebula located in the constellation Scorpius. It was discovered by astronomer John Herschel in 1837, who observed it from the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa. Gallery Wide view centred on NGC 6334.This video compares the near-infrared and submillimetre views of the star formation region.
NGC 6357 NGC 6357 and Pismis 24 This nebula was given the name War and Peace Nebula by the Midcourse Space Experiment scientists because of its appearance. They said that in infrared images the bright, western part resembles a dove, while the eastern part looks like a skull. Pismis 24 This nebula includes the open cluster Pismis 24, which is home to several massive stars.
Messier 4 Messier 4 or M4 (also designated NGC 6121) is a globular cluster in the constellation of Scorpius. It was discovered by Philippe Loys de Chéseaux in 1746 and catalogued by Charles Messier in 1764. It was the first globular cluster in which individual stars were resolved. Visibility M4 is conspicuous in even the smallest of telescopes as a fuzzy ball of light. It appears about the same size as the Moon in the sky.