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RA: 13h 50m 48s
Dec: −60° 24′ 0″
Ch: MSA:986, U2:430, SA:25
Ref: NGC/IC, Corwin (2004)
Type: open cluster
Mag: B=?, V=9
NGC 5299. There is a +30 arcmin error in the GC and NGC declination, but JH's original CGH observation is correct. Once we look in the right spot, we find a large (roughly 25 arcmin across) Milky Way star cloud that matches JH's description. I've adopted the identification.
Discovered by John Herschel at the Cape of Good Hope with an 18-inch f/13 speculum telescope. He recorded it as "Star cluster of Class VII; much more than fills field; a very large and rich milky way cluster, quite insulated on the preceding, north and following sides, and nearly so to the south; forming a kind of peninsular projection, but much richer than the main body of the milky way."
Burnham calls this a bright Milky Way field in Centaurus, diameter 30' and notes that it is probably not a true cluster. It is regarded as an invalid object in the NGC 2000.0.
The RNGC (Sulentic and Tifft 1973) notes that this is a nonexistent object. Their coded description reads NOCL) S.
Viewing with a two-inch refractor at 20x, it appears as a pleasing cluster, small, rich and irregular in shape. It is well concentrated, and the stars are on the verge of resolution; with averted vision, however, many stars sparkle out. The stars appear to be closely packed and regularly distributed.
1995-05-28: 11x80.Technopark. 20:15 SAST. Hazy sky, thin clouds. I don't see anything in binoculars that resembles a 'bright milky way cloud'. The whole area of the field is nebulous, typical milky way background, but nothing insulated enough to be called a separate object.
The Messier objects
The Bennett objects
The Caldwell list
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