The French astronomer Charles Messier was an avid comet hunter; however, even though he discovered 13 comets during his life, he is best known for his list of 110 deep sky objects. The list was compiled by Messier during his searches for comets. All of the objects have a diffuse, cometary appearance to either the naked eye or as seen in a telescope and were described by Messier as "objects to avoid." Today, this list provides a great showcase of some of the best deep sky objects that can be observed.

All of the images on this page were acquired at Kronk Observatory using either the Meade 20-cm LX-200GPS Schmidt-Cassegrain reflector or the Orion 8-cm EON Apochromatic refractor. The reflector provides a narrow field of view, while the refractor provides a wide field of view. The cameras have included the Canon Digital Rebel series, including the original Digital Rebel (6.3 megapixel), the Digital Rebel XTi (10.1 MP), the Digital Rebel XSi (12.2 MP), and the Digital Rebel T2i (18.0 MP). I presently have two of the Digital Rebel T2i cameras, one of which has been modified for astronomical photography. I also have two Mallincams, which are light intensified video cameras, which provide live views that easily exceed what an observer can see through the telescopes. I have owned a Mallincam Black and White video camera since December 2005, which was modified to a Hyper model during September 2006. I obtained a Color Mallincam Hyper Plus during April 2009.


M1: This is a narrow-field image of the "Crab Nebula" that was obtained on January 5, 2010. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. I stacked 66 frames from an AVI movie to produce this picture.


M2: This is a narrow-field image of the globular cluster that was obtained on October 3, 2008. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. This is a 90-second exposure and the field is about 8 arc minutes wide.


M3


M4


M5


M7: This is a wide-field image of this open cluster obtained on May 30, 2011. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. The field is about 1.5 degrees wide.


M8: "Lagoon Nebula" This is a wide-field image of the Lagoon Nebula obtained on April 10, 2011. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. Two 2-minute black and white exposures were stacked to produce this image.


M10 (satellite crossing upper left corner)


M12


M13


M14: This is a narrow-field image of this globular cluster that was obtained on February 26, 2006. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The field is about 20 arc minutes wide.


M16: "Eagle Nebula"


M17: "Omega Nebula" or "Swan Nebula"


M19: This is a narrow-field image of this globular cluster that was obtained on February 26, 2006. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The field is about 20 arc minutes wide.


M20: "Trifid Nebula"


M23: This is a wide-field image of this open cluster obtained on August 1, 2011. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. One 1-minute 20-second and two 1-minute exposures were stacked to produce this image.


M27: "Dumbbell Nebula"


M28: This is a narrow-field image of this globular cluster that was obtained on June 4, 2006. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The field is about 20 arc minutes wide.


M31, M32, and M110: This is a wide-field image of the Andromeda Galaxy (M31) obtained on October 30, 2010. Two satellite galaxies are also visible. These are the bright, elliptical galaxy M32, which is directly below the bright core of M31, and the irregular galaxy M110, which is in the upper right quadrant. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. One 3-minute and two 4-minutes exposures were stacked to produce this image.


M33: This is a wide-field image of the Pinwheel Galaxy obtained on October 28, 2010. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. Two 2.5-minute exposures were stacked to produce this image.


M35: This is a wide-field image of this open star cluster obtained on January 9, 2011. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. This is a single 2.5-minute exposure.


M42 & M43: This is a wide-field image of the Orion Nebula (M42) obtained on January 4, 2011. This nebula extends from the middle of the picture downward. Also near the middle, but slightly detached from M42 by a dark cloud of dust, is M43. Near the top of the image is NGC 1973, which contains three bright stars, and above that is NGC 1975. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. Six images ranging in exposure time from 30 seconds to 2.5 minutes were stacked in Photoshop.


M45: This is a wide-field image of the Pleiades obtained on October 30, 2010. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. This is a single 4-minute exposure.


M46: This is a wide-field image of this open star cluster obtained on January 9, 2011. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. This is a single 3-minute exposure. The small, bluish-green planetary nebula NGC 2438 is just above center.


M50: This is a wide-field image of this open star cluster obtained on January 8, 2011. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. This is a single 2-minute exposure.


M51: This is a narrow-field image of the Whirlpool Galaxy obtained on May 4, 2008. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. This is a six-minute exposure and the field is about 8 arc minutes wide.


M57: "Ring Nebula" This is a narrow-field image of this planetary nebula that was obtained on May 21, 2009. I used the MallinCam Color Hyper Plus and the 20-cm Meade reflector. Eleven 30-second exposures were stacked. The field is about 8' across.

M62

M63: "Sunflower Galaxy"

M64: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy obtained on March 11, 2011. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. I stacked twenty 15-second exposures.


M65 (left) & M66 (right): This is a narrow-field image of these two galaxies obtained on April 5, 2007. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. I stacked 1463 frames from a 50-second long AVI movie.


M67


M71: This is a narrow-field image of this globular cluster obtained on September 3, 2010. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. I stacked 20 frames from a 175-second long AVI movie. The field is about 8' across.


M74: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy obtained on October 14, 2006. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. I stacked 30 frames from a 7.5-second long AVI movie. The field is about 20' across.


M77: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy obtained on December 15, 2009. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. I stacked sixty 7-second exposures. The field is 8' across.


M78: This is a wide-field image of this reflection nebula obtained on January 8, 2011. M78 is the bright nebula near the center of the image, while NGC 2071 is the fainter nebula a short distance above it. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. Four images with exposures ranging from 2 to 2.5 minutes were stacked to produce this image.


M79


M80


M81


M82: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy obtained on February 16, 2010. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The Mallincam was set so that each frame of the AVI was a 14-second integration. I stacked 20 frames from the resulting 5-minute long AVI movie. The field is about 8' across.


M83: "Southern Pinwheel"


M92


M95: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy that was obtained on April 21, 2007. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The field is about 20 arc minutes wide.


M96: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy that was obtained on April 21, 2007. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The field is about 20 arc minutes wide.


M97: This is a narrow-field image of the planetary nebula known as the "Owl Nebula" that was obtained on April 8, 2009. I used the MallinCam Color Hyper Plus and the 20-cm Meade reflector. Twenty frames from two 3.5-minute long AVI movies were stacked. The field is about 20' across.


M98: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy that was obtained on February 26, 2006. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The field is about 20 arc minutes wide.


M99


M100: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy that was obtained on February 26, 2006. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. The field is about 20 arc minutes wide.


M101: This is a wide-field image of this galaxy obtained on April 2, 2011. I used the modified Canon T2i attached to the 8-cm refractor. Four images with exposures ranging from 3 to 7 minutes and using L, R, G, and B filters were stacked to produce this image.


M104: "Sombrero Galaxy"


M106


M109: This is a narrow-field image of this galaxy that was obtained on April 21, 2009. I used the MallinCam Black & White Hyper and the 20-cm Meade reflector. Ten frames from a 2-minute 15-second long AVI movie were stacked. The field is about 20' across.