Wizard Nebula (NGC 7380)

NGC 7380: Wizard Nebula in Cepheus; 500 mm Cassegrain 5800 mm f/11.4; SBIG STL11K; 90+40+40+40 min LRGB; Bernese Highlands; © 2011 Radek Chromik
NGC 7380: Wizard Nebula in Cepheus; Celestron RASA 11" f/2.22; ZWO ASI6200 Pro; Tentlingen; © Peter Kocher


The open star cluster was discovered on 7th August 1787 by William Herschels sister Caroline with her 4.2 inch reflector telescope. He observed it later on 1st January 1788 with his large 18.7 inch reflector telescope and cataloged it as VIII 77 (class VIII = coarsely scattered clusters of stars). He noted: «A cluster of coarsely scattered stars, 8' diameter. C. H. 1787» [464] John Herschel observed the cluster and cataloged it as h 2182 (GC 4842), but did not notice any nebula. The cluster was later added as NGC 7380 by Dreyer in his «New General Catalogue». [313]

The H-II region in the star cluster was cataloged by the American astronomer Stewart Sharpless in the 1950s and published as Sh2-142 in his second edition of the Sharpless catalog in 1959. He noted: «Part of II Cep association. Contains cluster NGC 7380» [310]

Physical Properties

NGC 7380 is a young, open star cluster of the Trumpler type III3pn with stars up to 7th magnitude. [196] The star cluster is shrouded in a galactic nebula (LBN 511, Sh2-142) consisting of red glowing, ionized hydrogen and dark molecular clouds. The nebula was nicknamed «Wizard Nebula».

The distances measured since 2000 are in the range of 1800 pc to 2222 pc (about 5870 to 7250 light years). [145] The age of the star cluster is estimated at 4 million to 12 million years [138, 311] At the center is the mag 8.58 star DH Cephei (HD 215835), a spectroscopic binary composed of two massive O5-6 stars with an orbital period of 2.111 days. It is late in purifying the surrounding material and may be responsible for the formation of numerous young stars in the surrounding molecular cloud. [312]

Revised+Historic NGC/IC, Version 22/9, © Dr. Wolfgang Steinicke [277]
DesignationNGC 7380
TypeOCL (III3pn)
Right Ascension (J2000.0)22h 47m 21.0s
Declination (J2000.0)+58° 07' 54"
Diameter20 arcmin
Visual magnitude7.2 mag
Metric Distance2.222 kpc
Dreyer DescriptionCl, pL, pRi, lC, st 9…13
Identification, RemarksOCL 244, LBN 511

Finder Chart

NGC 7380 is located in the constellation Cepheus at about the extension of ζ Cephei - δ Cephei to the east the same distance. The best observation time is May to December.

Finder Chart Wizard Nebula (NGC 7380)
Wizard Nebula (NGC 7380) in constellation Cepheus. 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]

Visual Observation

Description pending ...

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