Caldwell Objects

In 1995 Sir Patrick Moore (middle name Caldwell) created a the Caldwell Catalog, a list of 109 objects as a companion to the Messier catalog. Unlike the Messier catalog, this catalog contained some objects viewable only in the southern hemisphere. While I am probably not going to ever be able to image any of the Caldwell objects viewable only in the southern hemisphere I can see how many of the northern targets I can get.

I have imaged Caldwell objects with both DSLR and CCD cameras, click on one of the images below to see images shot with that type of camera.

Caldwell objects DSLR

DSLR Images

Caldwell catalog CCD

CCD Images

Popular Caldwell Objects

Although most of the objects you hear about at star parties are Messier objects, there are some very popular objects on the Caldwell list as well. Examples include; C04 the Iris Nebula, C33 the Eastern Veil Nebula, C34 the Witches Broom and C49 the Rosette Nebula.

These objects are some of the most rewarding targets you can image in the northern hemisphere. The Rosette Nebula is one of my personal favorites. It was one of the first targets I imaged with my DSLR and again with my CCD. The Rosette was also one of the first targets I ever printed on large format photographic paper.

The Veil and Witches broom are two fantastic targets because of the stunning colors. Few other targets from any catalog can match the vibrant colors of these two nebulae.

Another of my personal favorites is C63, the Helix Nebula. Not only does it have spectacular color but it also has a wonderful helix pattern which is just stunning. I also love imaging this target as it is up during the summer when few other targets like it are. I have been to several star parties for astrophotographers where this has been the group exercise.

You can read more about the Caldwell Catalog at Wikipedia.


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