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Entire DOCdb database of 18,816 objects.



NGC 6309 (14,271 of 18,816)


oc gc pln bn dn gx gxcl ast aka lost




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Box Nebula

NGC 6309, HD 155752, Hen 2-206, PK 009+14 1, PN VV' 171, PN VV 96, PN Sa 2-181, PN G009.6+14.8, Box Nebula, GC 5851

RA: 17h 14m 4.32s
Dec: −12° 54′ 37.7″

Con: Ophiuchus
Ch: MSA:1347, U2:292, SA:15


(reference key)

Type: planetary nebula

Mag: B=11.6, V=11.6

Size: ?
PA: ?

Published comments

Terzian, Y. (1980)

Terzian Y (1980) Q.J. R.astr.Soc vol 21, p82-92 [09.16.1] notes that this planetary shows multiple shell structure.

Sulentic & Tifft (1973)

The RNGC (Sulentic and Tifft 1973) notes that this is a 11.5 mag planetary nebula.

Photo index

Photo Index by Jim Lucyk: Sky&Tel. 8/84 p187.

Modern observations

Johnson, Bill

Bill Johnson of Rialto, California, used an 8-inch Newtonian to observe the cluster, and described it as "rectangular in shape" and notes that it bears magnifying well. He used high to medium powers to observe it.

Yann Pothier (IAAC)

Observer: Yann POTHIER (France) Your skill: advanced (many years) Object: NGC 6309 (PK 009+14.1; PN G009.6+48.2; ARO 66, He2-206) Category: planetary nebula Constellation: OPH Object data: Vmag=11.5; Bmag=10.8; 19"x11" (32"x27" in IDB); type III+II; central star of Vmag=12.8; discovered by Tempel in ???? (as a PN by Pickering in 1882); ELCAT: [OIII, 496+501nm] = 16 x [Hbeta, 486nm]. RA/DE: 17h14.1m, -12°55.0' (2000.0) Date and UT of observation: 18 February 1994, 05h30 UT Location & latitude: La Clapiere Obs. (France, latN44 40 00, longE06 27 36) Site classification: rural, alt.1650m (5500ft) Limiting magnitude (visual in UMi): 6.0 Transparency (1 to 5 - best to worst): 1 Seeing (1 to 5 - best to worst): 3 Moon up (phase?): no Instrument: Coulter 445mm/17.5" F/4.5 Magnification: 312x Filters used: OIII

Description: at 312x, small PN, bright; elongated NNW-SSE, about 30"x19", rugby-ball shaped; the NNW half is the brightest part of the nebula; mag12 star 12" from the NNW border; this nebula responds very well to OIII filter.

Tom Lorenzin

Tom Lorenzin, in the e-version of "1000+ The Amateur Astronomers' Field Guide to Deep Sky Observing", notes: "11.5M; 20" x 10" extent; bright, small oblong with crisp edges; axis oriented NNW-SSE; 14M center star; 13M star in glow 6" NNW of center; 1.5 degrees due W of 4.5M Nu SER."


Steve Coe

Steve Coe, using a 13" f/5.6, notes: " Pretty bright, small, elongated NW-SE and not brighter in the middle at 165X. This planetary hides in a rich Milky Way field of view and needs some power to bring it out. Another problem with finding this guy is that it hides near an 11th mag star and looks like a double star at low powers. There is another star which brackets this nebula, but it demands 220X to see."

Contemporary observations

Auke Slotegraaf

1995 June 01

1995-06-01: 11x80. Kelsey Farm. 23:00 SAST. Carefully examining the field with averted vision, and many times going back to the map, I suspect a star at this place, but its very faint, much fainter than the 9th mag stars used to find it. I am in two minds whether I see it or not.

1997 July 07

1997 July 7, Monday, 21:00 - 24:00 Jonkershoek. 11x80's tripod-mounted. Position easy to locate, after careful study, nothing seen.

Tom Bryant

2010 6 19 1:37:50

Observing site: Little Tycho Observatory

Telescope: C-8

[17h 14m 6s, -12° 55' 0"] An oblong smudge in pa 340°, with a 12mv star at it's center.

Magda Streicher

2010 June 7

Location: Polokwane

16-inch f/10 SCT (127x 290x 462x)

My first reaction was ‘what a special sight’. Obviously the magnitude 12.5 star on the planetary northern rim made the difference. First it could be mistaken for a double star. Higher power and the use of a 0111 (oxygen filter) is the trick to show the planetary as a hazy cotton ball. The edges seem woolly and almost see through. The frosted blue/white colour is obvious.

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Lacaille's catalogue

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