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Kemble's Cascade Asterism
Kemble's Cascade
Exposure Data
  • Image Field of View: 3.54° x 2.36
  • Camera Field of View: 3.79° x 2.52°
  • Scope: 70 mm ED doublet f/6 refractor
  • Focal Length: 336 mm
  • Focal Ratio: f/4.8 with 0.8x focal reducer
  • Camera: Modified Canon T2i (550D)
  • Exposure: 35 minutes total
    • 1 x 600 seconds at ISO 200
    • 1 x 300 seconds at ISO 200
    • 1 x 600 seconds at ISO 100
    • 2 x 300 seconds at ISO 100
  • Filter: None
  • SQM: 20.81

Hanging like brilliant colorful jewels in the night, Kemble's Cascade is an asterism consisting of an almost straight line of more than a dozen 5th to 10th magnitude stars spanning two-and-a-half degrees in the constellation of Camelopardalis. It runs from lower left, near open cluster NGC 1502, to upper right in this image.

This asterism is a random grouping of stars that seem to align from our perspective, unlike star clusters where the stars are physically associated with each other and occupy the same general area of space.

The Cascade is named after Father Lucian J. Kemble, a Franciscan Friar and amateur astronomer, who reported it to Walter Scott Houston, a writer for Sky and Telescope magazine. Kemble called it "a beautiful cascade of faint stars tumbling from the northwest down to open cluster NGC 1502." Houston subsequently wrote a column it in the magazine in 1980 naming the asterism "Kemble's Cascade."

On the right side of the image are two interesting red stars. The brightest at magnitude 5 is BD Camelopardalis (HD 22649), a spectral type S-class giant. Below it is another very red star, U Camelopardalis (HD 22611), an 11th magnitude spectral type C class carbon star.

Kemble's cascade makes a beautiful binocular object for observation in the winter.

North is to the top in the above image.

Kemble's Cascade
  • Catalogs: Kemble 1
  • Common Name: Kemble's Cascade
  • Object Type: Asterism
  • Magnitude: Mag 5 to 10
  • Size: 3.8° x 2.5°
  • Constellation: Camelopardalis
  • Image Field Centered At:
    • RA: 03h 55mm 50s
    • Dec: +62° 54' 40"

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