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Deep Sky Observer's Companion – the online database


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Full database:

Entire DOCdb database of 18,816 objects.



Seven Sisters of the Pole (1 of 18,816)


oc gc pln bn dn gx gxcl ast aka lost

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About DOCdb – a creative-commons deep sky database

DOCdb – Deep Sky Observer's Companion and database – is an online deep sky repository: a collection of web pages about deep sky observing.

In addition to news items, feature articles, historical resources and tutorials, DOCdb provides a database of deep sky object catalogue information, archival and user-contributed descriptions, sketches, and photographs.

DOCdb is a communal effort and will always be free to use (although some of the content is protected by various copyright conditions as stipulated by the individual contributors).


A special word of thanks to the following for their help:

Christian Hettlage, Francois Paul, Carol Botha, Gustav Paul, Martin Lyons, Hans van der Merwe, Bertus Kock, Magda Streicher, & Richard Ford.

Keen to help?

Your contributions are both welcome and much-needed. By sharing your deep sky descriptions, sketches & observing journals you're helping increase DOCdb's usefulness to the observing community. Other ways you could participate include:

 • research biographical profiles of historical deep sky observers;

 • digitize sketches published in old journals, monographs, etc.;

 • create electronic versions of important deep sky publications (scan/digitize articles, OCR, re-type, check);

 • prepare sketch blanks for various objects, from edited photos or published star charts;

 • find and collect published or unpublished photometric sequences of stars in open clusters (useful for limiting magnitude determination);

 • help revise new versions of, or create an Observer's Guide to, Barnard's dark nebulae, Gum nebulae, RCW nebulae, LMC and SMC charts, etc.; or

 • prepare data files in DOCdb-friendly format for stellar rings and chains as noted by Isserstedt, Uranova, Opik, Pismis, etc.

New feature articles & tutorials are always welcome, as are additions to the photo galleries.

Contact information

e-mail: aukepsychohistorian.org
Skype: psychohistorian
mobile: +27(0)74.100.7237

Get in touch via the Contact Page.

Web hosting

The DOCdb webspace is hosted on the psychohistorian.org server and is owned and maintained by Auke Slotegraaf, an enthusiastic deep sky observer & astronomy popularizer from South Africa.

The Bug Report

DOCdb is still in beta-release.

Known issues, feature requests, and updates on bug fixes, are here:

> Bug Report


Found a bug? Have a comment or suggestion to improve DOCdb? Please let us know!

> Contact us


DOCdb is a free online resource that exists to promote deep sky observing.

You could help by sharing your observations, writing an article, digitizing and proof-reading historical material, and more.

> Find out more

Everything on DOCdb.net is © 2004-2010 by Auke Slotegraaf, unless stated otherwise or if you can prove you have divine permission to use it. Before using material published here, please consult the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.5 License. Some material on DOCdb is copyright the individual authors. If in doubt, don't reproduce. And that goes for having children, too. Please note that the recommended browser for DOCdb is Firefox 3.x. You may also get good results with K-Meleon. Good luck if you're using IE. A successful experience with other browsers, including Opera and Safari, may vary.