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Planetary nebula books

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dawson's picture
Last seen: 2 days 20 hours ago
Joined: 15/03/2014 - 11:08
Planetary nebula books

Great talk tonight by Owen on the webinar. As someone who mostly observes things in the solar system, it’s easy to forget about these little beauties.

What books do you recommend to learn more about planetary nebula and get some ideas of some planetary nebula to look for outside of the Messier catalogue.

obrazell's picture
Last seen: 1 day 14 hours ago
Joined: 05/03/2014 - 07:38

Hi James, the list I would have is 

Webb Society Deep Sky Observers Handbook Vol 2

Night Sky Observers Guide Volume 4

Hynes Planetary Nebulae

Wallace - Visual Observations of Planetary Nebulae - available from Webb Soc

Hartung - Astronomical Objects for Southern Telescopes.

Cosmic Butterflies - Sun Kwok

Eicher - Deep Sky Observing with Small telescopes



  Webb Celestial Objects for Common Telescopes

Smyth - Bedford Catalogue

Deep Sky Wonders - Houston

Could not recommend

Planetary Nebulae and how to Observe Them - too many errors.

jack martin's picture
Last seen: 1 month 2 weeks ago
Joined: 20/01/2017 - 12:41
Following Owens excellent

Following Owens excellent talk last night here are links to a book and app I referred to in Q&A.

I noted the many references to Spectroscopy !

Clear skies,


Stewart Moore's picture
Last seen: 5 days 11 hours ago
Joined: 08/03/2014 - 13:45
PN Books

Hello James,

I agree with Owen's list and don't think there are any other books I'd add. Many past editions of The Deep Sky Observer (the Webb Society in-house journal) will be found to contain articles on planetaries so it's well worth joining Webb!  Also, if you use the Uranometria star atlas then the associated Deep Sky Field Guide to Uranometria (Willmann-Bell) gives useful short summaries of planetaries appearing in the atlas.

Hope this helps, Stewart

NickDHewitt's picture
Last seen: 18 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/03/2014 - 10:21
Planetary nebula books

Owen’s list is pretty comprehensive ( as we would expect). My only addition(s) would be the Stephen James O’Meara series from Cambridge. “The Secret Deep” and “Hidden Treasures“ have expansive entries on PNs. The first volume on the Messier objects is not really needed and the second ( the C......... objects) has a few. Some may be irritated by the rather idiosyncratic nicknames on offer but the meat of the info is good.

obrazell's picture
Last seen: 1 day 14 hours ago
Joined: 05/03/2014 - 07:38
good point

Yes I had forgotten the O'Meara series and there is some good information in them. Also in the Annals of the Deep Sky series from Willmann-Bell there is extensive coverage of some planetary nebulae, as well as many other kinds of deep sky object.

Daryl's picture
Last seen: 7 hours 25 min ago
Joined: 02/07/2015 - 21:35
Another book

The book by Sue French also called Deep Sky Wonders has quite a good selection of planetary nebulae. The Walter Scott Huston book of the same name not only commands eye watering prices second hand as it’s well out of print but is a totally different book to Sue French’s.