|PINE MOUNTAIN OBSERVATORY
Astrophotography with 8-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope (SCT) “piggybacked” on PMO’s 24-inch telescope.
|Open star clusters are relatively young (millions of years to about a billion years old) groups of stars, typically containing a few hundred visible stars, formed from nebulas in the spiral arms of our galaxy. Most of the ones we can see are between a few hundred and a few thousand light years away.|
|Famous star clusters: The “Wild Duck” (M11) star cluster on the left, and the “Double Cluster” in Perseus on the right. “M” refers to the French astronomer Messier, who cataloged approximately 100 fuzzy-looking objects that weren’t comets, back in the 1700s. (Star clusters often look fuzzy in small telescopes.)|
|Four “rich” open star clusters in the constellations of Gemini and Auriga: M35, M36, M37 and M38.|
|Winter Milky Way: Four more “rich” open star clusters in the winter Milky Way near Orion and Canis Major: M41, M46, M47 and M48. Note that M46 also contains a planetary nebula.|
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