BINOCULAR HIGHLIGHTS


Hercules is waving goodbye until next Summer as the Strong Man along with globular cluster M 13 sink toward the WNW horizon. One of the corners of the Summer Triangle (star Vega) is still high in the late Autumn night sky.
I still think that Neptune cannot easily be detected in binoculars, but its prominence high above the southern horizon in November makes it possible. First, start out by drawing a vertical line from the only bright star in this region (Fomalhaut) through second magnitude star Delta Aquarii (Scheat pronounced "SHEE-at" which is Arabic for "shin"). Second, continue a third of the distance further up to the area where Neptune is located. (Continue to next image)
This is a magnification of the previous image showing all the major stars in Aquarius The Water Carrier. The 4th Magnitude star Lamda Aquarii or Hydor is the orange yellow star located between the "p" and "t" of Neptune. (Continue to the next image)
Once you locate Hydor, you should be able to see ocean blue Neptune in the same binocular field or slightly below and to the right AND almost 10 times dimmer than Hydor! You're going to have to have good eyes and a steady hand or binocular tripod, or invest in a good quality computerized telescope.
The Perseus Double Cluster is a dim naked eye object that looks great in binoculars. It'll be found high above the NNE horizon below right of the "W" of Cassiopeia and above left of the banana shape of stars known as Perseus.