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The Western Part of Vulpecula


Vulpecula, Sagitta, Cygnus, Lyra, Aquila


Move your mouse over the image above to get a version with constellation lines, deep-sky objects and labels drawn.

Vulpecula, the little fox, is an inconspicuous constellation between Cygnus and Sagitta. None of its stars is brighter than 4th magnitude. It is a "modern" constellation which was defined in the 17th century by the astronomer Johannes Hevelius. The brightest star in Vulpecula is Anser (α Vulpeculae), a red giant loctaed at a distance of 297 light years.

The constellation is located in a rich stretch of the Milky Way. It contains numerous galactic clusters and nebulae. The brighter deep-sky objects are marked in the image above.

Non-Messier objects are mostly open clusters. The largest and best-known of these is Collinder 399 (also called Brocchi's cluster), located in the lower pert of the image, whose distinctive star pattern reminds of a coat-hanger. It can already be seen with the naked eye. Other open clusters include NGC 6793, NGC 6800, NGC 6802, NGC 6813, NGC 6815, NGC 6823, NGC 6827, NGC 6830 and NGC 6834. NGC 6820 is a faint emission nebula while vdB 126 is a faint relection nebula. M56, located in Lyra, is a globular cluster.

For more information and detailed pictures of the more prominent individual objects follow the links given below:

The Milky Way in Cygnus, zoom lens photograph.
Vulpecula and Sagitta, zoom lens photograph.
NGC 6820 and NGC 6823, Wright-Newtonian photograph.
van den Bergh 126, LRGB image.

Exposure Data

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© 2015 Walter Koprolin