Constellations: Hercules and Lyra

Although the 5th largest constellation in the sky, Hercules is not very prominent. It represents a kneeling man with one foot on the head of the dragon Draco.Look out for M13 (NGC 6205), a magnificent 6th magnitude globular cluster, the brightest visible from Northern latitudes.

It contains around 300,000 stars. It is just visible with the unaided eye. Binoculars and small telescopes show it well.

Best seen in Northern Latitudes in the Summer, Lyra is a small, but bright, constellation which contains the 5th brightest star in the sky, Vega. Vega forms part of the ‘Summer Triangle’ with Altair in Aquila and Deneb in Cygnus.

M57, the famous Ring Nebula, magnitude 9, located between Sheliak and Sulafat can be seen as a small elliptical patch of mist in small telescopes. It is one of the largest planetary nebulae.