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The Messier marathon


The Messier objects are a set of astronomical objects catalogued by Charles Messier in his catalogue of Nebulae and Star Clusters first published in 1774. The original motivation behind the catalogue was that Messier was a comet hunter, and was frustrated by objects which resembled but were not comets. He therefore compiled a list of these objects. The Messier objects are still the most well known - and bright - objects on the night sky. Silicon Owl has an overview of the appearance of these objects, both in a telescope, and as photographed with professional equipment.

A Messier Marathon is an all night (or as long as you can stay awake!) search to try to identify as many of the Messier objects as you can, up to 110! If you time it right, are properly prepared, and try to find the objects in the best possible order, you'll find many of them. Sounds like fun.


Voor de Nederlandstaligen onder ons : heeft een mooi overzicht van de Messier catalogus, zoals zichtbaar in kleine telescopen. Alleen jammer van de kleine foto's :(