It’s my favorite time of year again! Andromeda is directly above in the Fall sky and the crisp, cool nights are upon us. The easiest way to find Andromeda is to look Northeast towards the asterism of Cassiopeia. The asterism of course, is in the shape of a “W”. From the asterism, use the chart below (from Sky Safari) to locate Andromeda. Easily visible in binoculars, and with the naked eye in a darker sky, Andromeda is the closest Galaxy to our own.
For the last three months, I’ve been imaging the galaxy with my Telescope at the Marathon Sky Park in Marathon Texas. Click the image above to visit the fully zoomable data collected. As you look through the image, keep in mind each blue circle on the plate solve represents a galaxy! It can really play tricks with your depth perception.
Each year, the appearance of Cassiopeia and Andromeda mark the beginning of Fall for most Stargazers in the Northern Hemisphere of the West. Along with our closest neighbor, we are also treated to globular clusters, nebula, and eventually a stellar nursery in the crucible of Orion. While these cosmic wonders come and go each year, it’s always a welcomed site for me.
This year, I’m hoping to finish up my Messier Marathon that I started so long ago! Here’s hoping I see you out at some of our Star Parties with the Barnard Astronomical Society of Chattanooga.
Just a reminder for anyone looking for a unique gift idea for the holidays, my astrophotography is for sale on my Online Print store located here: https://fineartamerica.com/featured/andromeda-matt-harbison.html