Universe Watch is once again looking west of Sydney at the large number of objects to see in the sky. Today we are looking at M25 is a worthy subject to look at with your telescopes. It has a magnitude of +4.5 so you can even see it with your naked eye…. but your scope will allow you to see more of this open cluster which consists of around 600 stars….. including young blue stars.



M25 Open Star Cluster (Click to Enlarge)

The picture on the left gives you a view of what is in the sky west of Sydney tonight at 9pm, similar to the one shown in today’s Universe Watch. However, this picture does not show any star clusters such as M25 but instead shows a map of  how many comets there are in the western sky over sydney tonight and where in the sky they are found.


Now the majority of these are going to be too far away for you to see , for example LINEAR 187P towards the top of the picture which has a magnitude of   +18. You would need a serious telescope to see this one.

Of all these comets shown here, with a backyard telescope you will probably not see most of them. If you can see objects above magnitude +13 and +18, you will be able to see most of them.

Comets in Sydney's Sky (Click to Enlarge)

Comets in Sydney's Sky (Click to Enlarge)

Otherwise, there is only one comet in the western sky at 9pm tonight that is borderline and you may see it if sky conditions are great.

Christensen C/2006 W3 is shown on the right hand side of the picture and has a magnitude of 12.8. It is moving away from us at such a great speed that on November 3rd it will be a magnitude +13 comet and will be more diffacult to spot for most of us.

Christensen C/2006 W3 was actually at it’s brightest on august 11 when it had a magnitude of +7.9 and had a lot of amateur astronomers looking at it with interest.

~ by sydneystargazers on October 23, 2009.

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