|Right ascension||11h 14.8m|
|Apparent magnitude (V)||+9.9|
|Apparent dimensions (V)||3.4 × 3.3 arcmin|
|Absolute magnitude (V)||-|
|Notable features||Owl-like "eyes" visible through larger telescopes|
|Other designations||M97, NGC 3587|
M97 is regarded as one of the more complex of the planetaries. The 16th magnitude central w:star has about 0.7 w:solar mass and the nebula itself about 0.15 solar mass. The nebula formed roughly 6,000 years ago.
The nebula gets it name due to the appearance of owl-like "eyes" when view through a large (>200 mm) telescope under dark sky conditions with the aid of a so-called "nebula filter." The "eyes" are also easily visible through photographs taken of the nebula.
- The Owl Nebula @ SEDS Messier pages
- NightSkyInfo.com - M97, the Owl Nebula
- M97, imaged with a semiprofessional amateur-telescope