Astrophotography Targets for July

M13 Great Hercules ClustergcHer 16H 41.7m +36°28'5.816.6'Beginner
Abell 2151 Hercules Galaxy ClustercgHer 16H 5.3m +17°45'-Intermediate
IC 4604 Rho Ophiuchus NebuladnOph 16H 25.5m -23°27'Intermediate
NGC 6369pnOph 17H 29.35m -23°45.58'11.41' × 0.6'Advanced
NGC 6384sgOph 17H 32.4m +7°4'10.66'Advanced
NGC 6503sgDra 17H 49.4m +70°9'10.26.2'Advanced
NGC 6543 Cat's Eye NebulapnDra 17H 58.56m +66°37.98'8.10.4' × 0.3'Advanced
George Moromisato
1 July 2010

July has very few targets, but the ones it has are all the more precious; they are like rare, beautiful jewels scattered across the night sky.

The most famous jewel in the skies of July has to be the beautiful star cluster known as M13. This spherical collection of stars lies out beyond the disk of the Milky Way, orbiting our galaxy the way a satellite orbits Earth.

Another, less famous jewel is the object known as the Rho Ophiuchus Nebula. This stunning nebular complex shines in myriad colors and is a favorite target of many astrophotographers.

The final jewel is the smallest of all, both in actual size and as seen from Earth. The Cat's Eye Nebula (NGC 6543) is a planetary nebula in Draco. Its small apparent size means that you will need lots of magnification to capture its details. But the result will be worth it.