Instructables

How to Identify Constellations

Picture of How to Identify Constellations
First you need:

*A star chart (can be found on skymaps.com)

*A really dark sky

*A good pair of eyes

 
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Step 1: Orient the Star Chart

To use a star chart to identify stars and constellations, you must first find the one appropriate for the time of year you are observing. Face North to Orient the star Chart. If the star chart says South, turn yourself and the starchart south. Make sure everything is lined up correctly by facing Polaris for North. Polaris is the North Star. It is one of the brightest star and is most of the time near the horizon.

Step 2: Compare

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Compare the stars on the star chart and the stars you see in the night sky. When you find Polaris on the star chart and in the night sky, you can find other constellations. It is not that hard. If you want to find galaxies or nebulae. I suggest you use an advanced star chart.
I found it easier to photograph parts of the sky and then annotate the photos, revealing the stars.

photographing constellations