Deep Space Hunt

Amateur astronomers set challenges upon themselves by patiently searching for deep sky objects.These tasks will often carry the challenge well over 12 months, and even longer at times, due to weather as well as other unforeseen reasons.  One of the most important rules is that all objects must be hunted by way of star hopping, therefore computerised go-to telescopes are strictly not allowed.  If you are interested in conducting your own hunt and don't know where to begin. Drop us a line and we would be more than happy to help you out.

The Messier List

One of the deep sky catalogues which is mostly used is the Messier Catalogue which was created and compiled by  a French astronomer Charles Messier during the years from 1758 to 1782. Charles Messier compiled a list of approximately 100 diffuse objects which were difficult to distinguish from comets through the telescopes of the day. The way to make a name for yourself in astronomy in the 18th century was by discovering comets. Charles Messier's aim was to catalogue the objects that were most often mistaken for comets.

There are 110 messier objects on this list, however being in Australia, only 100 out of the 110 can be seen.

You can download this Printable List for your use.

 30 Messiers
 60 Messiers  90 Messiers  100 Messiers
 Paul O'Neil  Lloyd Wright  Ivan Fox  Peter Elston
   Chris Malikoff  Bob Bee  Bobbie Elston
   Henry Swierk  Trevor Rhodes  John Rombi
   Debra Taylor    Dick Everett
       Daniel Ross
       Ian Cook


The Dunlop List

In the years 1823-1827, James Dunlop, (1795-1848) observed the southern skies from the Brisbane observatory at Paramatta, New South Wales, Australia. He compiled several catalogs, among them the Brisbane Catalog of over 7000 southern stars, and 'A Catalogue of Nebulae and Clusters of Stars in the Southern Hemisphere' observed in New South Wales of 629 entries for deepsky objects.  The top 100 objects have been selected to make up the Dunlop 100 for observers to hunt down as per the above Messier List.

You can download this Printable Listfor your use.

25 Dunlops 50 Dunlops   75 Dunlops 100 Dunlops
   Trevor Rhodes    


The Bennett List

For two decades, starting in the late 1960's, the southern sky was patrolled by a dedicated South African comet-hunter named Jack Bennett. He observed from his urban backyard with a 5-inch low-power refractor. Among the 152 objects are the Tarantula, Omega Centauri, 47 Tucanae, Sombrero and the Silver Coin.

You can download this Printable List for your use.

40 Bennetts 80 Bennetts
120 Bennetts
152 Bennetts

The Caldwell List

This is a short catalog of bright objects not contained in the Messier catalog. All the objects in this list can be seen in typical amateur telescopes.

30 Caldwells 60 Caldwells
90 Caldwells
100 Caldwells

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