Advanced star atlases
Avid deep-sky observers need more than the above atlases can offer. When you scan the sky through large telescopes — those with apertures of 10 inches or more — a 6th-magnitude limit doesn’t get you far. Luckily, we can turn to advanced star atlases that show stars to 9th magnitude and fainter and plot tens of thousands of deep-sky objects.
The two-volume Uranometria 2000.0
is just such a star atlas. The 2001 second edition plotted more stars and deep-sky objects than any atlas that came before it. Uranometria
contains 220 double-page atlas charts, which collectively show more than 280,000 stars to magnitude 9.75 and 30,000 deep-sky objects. Uranometria
divides the sky in half, with declinations between 90° and –6° covered in volume one and 6° to –90° included in volume two.
This atlas also includes a set of 22 “Uranometria
Star Maps” at the front of each volume. These wide-scale maps serve as keys to the more detailed atlas charts. In addition to the standard lists of deep-sky objects (Messier, Caldwell, etc.), Uranometria
includes objects in comparatively obscure lists such as the Uppsala General Catalog of Galaxies
and the Strasbourg-ESO Catalog of Galactic Planetary Nebulae
organizes its charts by decreasing declination (north to south). Within each declination range, the charts flow from east to west by decreasing hours of right ascension (rather than by increasing right ascension). This allows each chart to flow across the book’s binding, creating continuous two-page maps that measure 18 inches wide by 12 inches tall (45.7cm by 30.5cm).
also includes a series of maps illustrating selected regions whose scale has been magnified 2 to 3 times and that show stars to at least magnitude 11.5. Enlarged charts are provided for the Coma-Virgo galaxy cluster, several Abell galaxy clusters, the Large Magellanic Cloud, and areas in Cygnus, Scorpius, and Sagittarius.