TELESCOPIC HIGHLIGHTS


The Iris Nebula (NGC 7023) is a small section of a giant dust cloud that is reflecting the blue light emitted by a hot young star in its center. There is no data indicating that the star and the dust cloud are related other than being near enough to each other for the dust grains in the cloud to reflect the star's light like a fog reflects a car's headlights. It's color and shape looks to some like an Iris flower. NGC 7023 lies 1,300 light years away in the constellation Cepheus The King. The blue part of the nebula is 6 light years in diameter, but the dust cloud it's embedded in is more than 3 times larger (angularly equivalent to 5 full Moons side by side).
This is a good time of year to revisit Globular Cluster M 15 on the border of Pegasus The Winged Horse and Equuleus The Little Horse. If you have imaging equipment for your telescope, you may be able to capture a small blue planetary nebula within the cluster.
M 28 is another globular cluster often overlooked because of the immense and brighter globular cluster M 22 about 2 degrees above and to the left of M 28.