The Constellation Norma

by Dominic Ford
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Norma is a small and faint southern constellation, which appears highest in the evening sky in the months around May.

It was created by Nicolas Louis de Lacaille in 1756 from a dark patch of sky between Lupus and Ara, and represents a set-square and rule. Originally called ‘l'Equerre et la Regle’, its name was Latinised and abbreviated to Norma in 1763.

Norma lacks any stars brighter than fourth magnitude, but lies close to the plane of the Milky Way and offers the deep sky observer a rich array of open star clusters.

Its brightest star is designated γ²-Nor; although Lacaille created a full set of Bayer letter designations for its stars, he originally envisaged a much larger constellation and the stars he denoted α and β now lie within the modern constellation of Scorpius, where they are now designated N-Sco and H-Sco.

Date First Appeared
1756 (Lacaille)
Sky Area
0.4% of the sky
165.3 square degrees
Messier Objects
Norma contains no Messier objects
Caldwell Objects
Norma contains the following Caldwell object: C89.
The following constellations neighbor Norma: Ara, Circinus, Lupus, Norma, Scorpius, Triangulum Australe.
Norma Norma
The constellation Norma as it appears to the unaided eye. Roll mouse over to see labels.
Source: Stellarium.

San Diego



Color scheme

Brightest Objects in Norma

Hover the pointer over the name of an object to highlight its position on the starchart to the right, or click to see more information.

Stars Open Clusters Globular Clusters Galaxies
γ²-Nor (mag 4.0) NGC 6087 (mag 5.4) NGC 5946 (mag 8.4)
ε-Nor (mag 4.5) NGC 6067 (mag 5.6)
η-Nor (mag 4.7) NGC 6169 (mag 6.6)
ι¹-Nor (mag 4.7) NGC 6167 (mag 6.7)
δ-Nor (mag 4.7) NGC 6134 (mag 7.2)
μ-Nor (mag 4.9) NGC 6152 (mag 8.1)
κ-Nor (mag 5.0) NGC 5925 (mag 8.4)
γ¹-Nor (mag 5.0) NGC 6031 (mag 8.5)
θ-Nor (mag 5.1) NGC 5999 (mag 9.0)
HIP 80208 (mag 5.3) NGC 6115 (mag 9.8)
QU Nor (mag 5.4) NGC 6005 (mag 10.7)
HIP 76618 (mag 5.4)
λ-Nor (mag 5.4)
HIP 79754 (mag 5.5)
ι²-Nor (mag 5.6)
HIP 79689 (mag 5.6)
HIP 80675 (mag 5.7)
HIP 80054 (mag 5.8)
HIP 77562 (mag 5.8)
HIP 77645 (mag 5.8)
ζ-Nor (mag 5.8)
HIP 77541 (mag 5.8)
HIP 77990 (mag 5.9)
HIP 80212 (mag 5.9)
HIP 76716 (mag 5.9)
39-Nor (mag 6.0)
HIP 77678 (mag 6.0)
HIP 76935 (mag 6.0)
HIP 77454 (mag 6.1)
HIP 80788 (mag 6.1)
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