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(IAAC) OBJECT: M48 (open cluster) Inst: 16" newt f/4.59 - corrected DEC.



Observer:  Todd Gross
Your skill:  Intermediate 
Date and UT of observation: 12/16/97 08:10GMT
Location & latitude: 22 miles west of Boston, Ma. 42.3N
Site classification: Suburban
Limiting magnitude (visual): 4 (estimated) 4 (est) in vicinity of object
Seeing (1 to 10 - worst-best):  3-4
Moon up (phase?): Yes, 85%
Weather: Clear
Instrument: 16" Newtonian-dob w. 96/99% coatings f/4.59   f.l. 1865
Magnifications: 69x (27 Panoptic)
Filters used: none
Object: M48
Constellation: Hydra
Object data: Open cluster
Size(s): Just under 1 degree 
Position: RA 8:14 DEC-5:48  
Magnitudes: 5.8
Personal "rating" (at this aperture, and sky condition):  B
I was surprised at how nice this was in this scope. Consists mainly of
bright stars (from what I can tell as the moon was near this object, so
only the brighter members would have shown). Large cluster, just
barely fitting in my 1 degree field of view. Counted around 50 members.
A very, very distinct asterism resides in the middle of the cluster that
looks like a figure S, with the top of the S smaller than the bottom (inverted
view) or.. also much like a figure eight, as drawn by hand. This asterism 
consisted of approximately 13 stars, and was the brightest portion of the 
cluster.