Planetary Nebula Abell 79

Abell 79
Abell 79: Planetary nebula in Lacerta; 500 mm Cassegrain f=5800 mm f/11.4; SBIG STL11K; 60+60+60+60 min LRGB; Bernese Highlands; © 2005 Radek Chromik [32]
Abell 79
Abell 79: Planetary nebula in Lacerta; Takahashi Mewlon 250 CR (2500 mm f/10), SBIG STL 11k; 14L x 1200sec 1×1, 15R, 10G, 13B, 8HA 2×2 x 1200sec; Bernese Highlands; © 29.11. – 30.12. 2016 Bernhard Blank, Dragan Vogel [32]


The planetary nebula Abell 79 (PN A55 65, PN A66 79, PK 102-2.1) was discovered in 1955 by the American astronomer George Ogden Abell on the photo plates of the Palomar Observatory Sky Survey (POSS). In 1966 he published a list of a total of 86 planetary nebulae discovered on the POSS photo plates. [331, 332]

Physical Properties

Abell 79 is an unusually shaped planetary nebula. It consists of an irregular and widened oval ring from which weak, oppositely directed lobes emerge, which have almost disappeared in the interstellar medium. A pronounced asymmetry can be seen in the surface brightness of the northern lobe: the northeast side is much brighter than the other. The presumably circular ring is inclined at 49 degrees with the north side in our direction. Strangely enough, the central star is a relatively cool dwarf star that is unable to produce the ionizing radiation visible in its spectrum, which suggests an invisible, hot companion. [207]

The distance to Abell 79 is 1801 parsecs, about 5900 light years. Apparent brightnesses measured in different filters: B 17.8 mag, V: 16.9 mag, R: 16.3 mag, I: 15.7 mag, J: 15.0 mag, H: 14.6 mag, K: 14.4 mag. [145]

«Strasbourg-ESO Catalogue of Galactic Planetary Nebulae» Acker et al., 1992 [141]
Designations PN G102.9-02.3: A 79, PK 102-02.1, A55 65, ARO 372, VV' 562
Right Ascension (J2000.0) 22h 26m 17s
Declination (J2000.0) +54° 49' 41"
Dimensions 54." (optical)
Expansion Velocity 12.5 (O-III) 12.5 (N-II) km/s
C-Star Designations AG82 440
C-Star Magnitude B: 18.7
Discoverer ABELL 1955

Finder Chart

The planetary nebula Abell 79 is located in the constellation Lacerta (Lizard). It is circumpolar in Central Europe, but the best time to observe it is May to December, when it is highest at night. On 27 August the PN is in opposition with the Sun.

Finder Chart Planetary Nebula Abell 79
Planetary Nebula Abell 79 in constellation Lacerta. Charts created using SkySafari 6 Pro and STScI Digitized Sky Survey. Limiting magnitudes: Constellation chart ~6.5 mag, DSS2 close-ups ~20 mag. [149, 160]

Objects Within a Radius of 15°