(M, Messier Objects, Catalogue des Nebuleuses et des Amas d'Etoiles, Catalogue of Nebulae and Star Clusters, Messier Catalog)
(catalog of astronomical objects to avoid when looking for comets)
The Messier Catalog (or list of Messier Objects or
Catalogue des Nebuleuses et des Amas d'Etoiles, i.e.,
Catalogue of Nebulae and Star Clusters) is
Charles Messier's 1771 catalog
of fixed but apparently-non-stellar
astronomical objects, almost all now known to be galaxies.
Messier was interested in finding comets and produced this
list of objects that look like comets but had been established
to be something else. The objects are designated M with a number
(examples: Andromeda (M31), Triangulum Galaxy (M33), M82, M87) and
include galaxies, clouds, and stellar clusters.
The objects are number 1 through 110, the last seven
being objects Messier did not include in his list,
but are mentioned in his notes.
All that are galaxies are also in the New General Catalogue.
The Messier designations are still often used by astronomers.
|Prefix||Example|| || |
|M||M85-HCC1||galaxy near M85|| |
|M||M87|| || |
Referenced by pages:
Crab Nebula (M1)
Messier 100 (M100)
Pinwheel Galaxy (M101)
Sombrero Galaxy (M104)
Messier 106 (M106)
Messier 15 (M15)
Triangulum Galaxy (M33)
Whirlpool Galaxy (M51a)
Messier 74 (M74)
Messier 84 (M84)
Spindle Galaxy (NGC 5866)
Orion Nebula (M42)