Sky Object of the Month – June 2016

 

Sky Object of the Month – June 2016

(Courtesy LVAS Observer’s Challenge*)

Messier 5 – Globular Cluster in Serpens Caput

(Magnitude – 6.2, Dimension – 17’)

“Beautiful nebula discovered between Libra and Serpens, close to the sixth-magnitude star Flamsteed 5 Serpentis.” Charles Messier (1764)

“This superb object is a noble mass, refreshing to the senses after searching for fainter objects” Admiral Smyth (1838)

“A beautiful assemblage of minute stars, 11-15 mag. Greatly compressed in the centre.” T.W. Webb (c. 1859)

“Myriads of glistening points shimmering over a soft background of starry mist.” Mary Proctor (1924)

            These comments about Messier 5 say it all. This is one of the finest globular clusters in the northern sky, rivaling Messier 3 in Canes Venatici and M13 in Hercules. Discovered by the German astronomer Gottfried Kirch in 1702, Messier 5 is about 25,000 light years away.  

                                        www.constellation-guide.com                                                  

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Mario Motta MD

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