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What's in the Sky?

Wednesday 25th of April

M5 Globular Cluster
M5 is a 5th magnitude globular star cluster in Serpens Caput located about 8 degrees southwest of Alpha Serpentis. It is one of the finest globulars for viewing in the late spring/summer sky.

Messier 5 or M5 (also designated NGC 5904) is a globular cluster in the constellation Serpens. It was discovered by Gottfried Kirch in 1702

M5 is, under extremely good conditions, just visible to the naked eye as a faint "star" near the star 5 Serpentis. Binoculars or small telescopes will identify the object as non-stellar while larger telescopes will show some individual stars, of which the brightest are of apparent magnitude 12.2.

At 13 billion years old it, M5 is also one of the older globulars associated with the Milky Way Galaxy. Its distance is about 24,500 light-years from Earth and the cluster contains more than 100,000 stars, as many as 500,000 according to some estimates.

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