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Star Clusters, 01 May 1994 -
27 August 2021

M2 (Aquarius)

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Details

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David Murton, 09 September 2017.

Skywatcher 190 mm Maksutov-Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Eleven 420 s exposures at ISO 400. Composite image with the Moon superimposed nearby, to illustrate the scale of the cluster.


M3 (Canes Venatici)

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John Hughes, 22 April 2020.

Images captured 19, 21 and 22 April 2020. William Optics Z103, ZWO ASI1600mm Pro Cooled camera, SkyWatcher EQ6R-Pro mount, Sesto Senso motor focuser, Chroma LRGB 1.25" filters. Frames: luminance 182 x 1 minute, luminance 31 x 5 minutes, red 31 x 2 minutes (bin 2x2), green 34 x 2 minutes (bin 2x2), blue 39 x 2 minutes (bin 2x2). Total integration Time 9.2 hours. Darks, flat darks and flats x 50.

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David Murton, 03 April 2017.

Skywatcher 190 mm Maksutov-Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Ten 360 s exposures at ISO 400.

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David Murton, 10 February 2016.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Four 360 s exposures at ISO 400.


M11, the Wild Duck Cluster (Aquila)

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Details

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David Murton, 31 July 2017.

Skywatcher 190 mm Maksutov-Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Three 360 s exposures at ISO 800.

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David Murton, 22 September 2016.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 1100D camera. Seven 360 s exposures at ISO 200.

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David Murton, 23 October 2013.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera. Stack of three 30 s exposures at ISO 1600 with minimal additional processing. (Exposure time limited due to imperfect polar alignment.) Prime focus without additional magnification.


M13 (Hercules)

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Details

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John Hughes, 28 May 2020.

Images captured 11, 13, 14, 19 and 28 May 2020: three nights to acquire the red, green and blue channels and a further two nights with different gain/offset settings for the luminance channel to help bring out the core. Total integration time 11.9 hours. Equipment: William Optics Z103 refractor, ZWO ASI1600mm Pro Cooled camera, Chroma LRGB 1.25" filters, filter wheel, Sesto Senso focuser and Skywatcher EQ6R-Pro mount.

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David Murton, 27 May 2017.

200 mm Meade SCT with Canon 60Da camera. Stack of six 480 s exposures at ISO 400.

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David Murton, 02 August 2015.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera with Skywatcher coma corrector. Five 300 s exposures with dark frames and flat frames. Image slightly cropped. Also visible in the full frame (not the thumbnail) to the top left is the magnitude 12 galaxy NGC 6207.

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David Murton, 21 July 2015.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera with Skywatcher coma corrector. Four 180 s exposures at ISO 400. Again, NGC 6207 is visible in the full frame. The sky was fantastically clear!

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David Murton, 04 October 2014.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera with Skywatcher coma corrector. Six 240 s exposures at ISO 800 and five dark frames. The image is compromised by bright moonlight.

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Kev Fulcher, 23 August 2014.

200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 30D camera. The galaxy NGC6207 (at a distance of 30 million light years) is also just visible in the full frame (not the thumbnail), at magnitude 12.1.

star_clusters/20131023_M13_DM.jpg

David Murton, 23 October 2013.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera with Skywatcher coma corrector at prime focus without additional magnification. Three 30 s exposures at ISO 1600 with minimal additional processing. (Exposure time limited due to imperfect polar alignment.) The galaxy NGC 6207 is visible toward the top centre of the full image (not the thumbnail).

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Mike O'Mahony, 01 November 2012.

Canon EOS 600D camera, 25 s exposure at ISO 1600.

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Ric Pecce, 01 May 1994.

Ten minute guided exposure on hypersensitised Technical Pan film with a 250 mm f/10 SCT.


M15 (Pegasus)

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Details

star_clusters/20170909_M15_DM.jpg

David Murton, 09 September 2017.

Skywatcher 190 mm Maksutov-Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Ten 420 s exposures at ISO 400. Enlargement.

star_clusters/20150903_M15_DM.jpg

David Murton, 03 September 2015.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera. Eleven frames at 360 s at ISO 200 with dark frames and flat frames.


M35 (Gemini)

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Details

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John Hughes, 20 December 2020.

William Optics Z61, ZWO ASI294MC Pro Cooled camera. An LRGB shot with 12 frames for each channel at an exposure time of 2 minutes per frame. NGC2158 is to the lower right of centre (it is approximately 9,000 light years further away than M35 and the two clusters are unrelated).

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Martin Cook, 04 February 2016.

Skywatcher Explorer 200P with Canon 1100D camera at prime focus. Stack of five 30 s exposure at ISO 1600. Light curves adjusted in Photoshop CS5.


M36 (Auriga)

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Details

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John Hughes, 12 January 2021.

Williams Optics Z103 refractor, ZWO ASI1600mm Pro Cooled camera (gain 139, offset 30, temp -10°C), SkyWatcher EQ6R-Pro mount, Chroma 1.25” RGB filters and 3 nm Hα filter. Image acquired using Sequence Generator Pro and processed in PixInsight. Auriga abounds with open clusters and nebulosity and offers great targets for imaging. I captured star cluster M36 and NGC1931, a small region of nebulosity to the west (visible in the full image, not the thumbnail to left). Unfortunately, I had just under four hours of image time and whilst I managed to capture some detail in NGC1931, there is more to capture in Hα in the nebula itself and between it and M36. Image capture times: Hα 12x300 s, R 30x120 s, G 27x120 s, B 30x120 s.


M39 (Cygnus)

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Details

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John Hughes, 27 August 2021.

William Optics Z103 refractor, ZWO ASI1600mm Pro Cooled camera, SkyWatcher EQ6R-Pro mount and Chroma 1.25” filters in red, green and blue. Exposure time was a modest 60 s with 81, 70 and 65 frames captured in RGB respectively. Camera gain 139, offset 30 and sensor temperature -10°C. Messier 39 (NGC7092) is an understated open cluster of just over 30 bright young stars. The stars are estimated to be 300 million years old and the cluster is 825 light years distant and has a radius of 3.6 light years. M39 is located broadly in the direction of the centre of the Milky Way (although not exactly so) and some dust clouds associated with the central part of the galaxy are visible: to the top right, a semi-circular lane on the corner is likely LDN1008; just below the bright star representing the lower left corner of the the "triangle" forming M39 is a dark area which is likely either LDN1012 or LDN1009.


M44 (Cancer)

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Details

star_clusters/20190224_M44_JWH.jpg

John Hughes, 24 February 2019.

William Optics Z61, Canon T3i Rebel DSLR (unmodded) using Astrophotography Tool to capture the images. Twenty-five light frames at ISO 800 x 100 s exposures, plus the same number of darks, flats and bias frames. Processed in PixInSight.

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David Murton, 22 March 2014.

William Optics ZS71 ED 71 mm, f/5.9 refractor on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera and 0.8 focal reducer/flattener. Single 60 s exposure at ISO 800.


M45, The Pleiades (Taurus)

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Details

star_clusters/20190223_M45_JWH.jpg

John Hughes, 23 February 2019.

William Optics Z61 including field flattener, Canon T3i Rebel DSLR (unmodded) using Astrophotography Tool to capture the images. Forty light frames at ISO 800 x 100 s exposures, 15 darks, 15 flats and 15 bias frames all stacked in DSS and processed through Photoshop. This was my first time guiding, all rather new!

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Andy Gibbs, 25 November 2017.

Explore Scientific ED80 CF apochromatic refractor on an HEQ5 mount and Canon 1200D camera. Processed with Deep Sky Stacker and Photoshop CC.

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David Murton, 22 October 2017.

Skywatcher 190 mm Maksutov-Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Nine 360 s exposures at ISO 400, processed to bring out the nebulosity surrounding the stars.

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David Murton, 24 November 2016.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Ten 360 s exposures at ISO 400.

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David Murton, 24 November 2016.

Above image re-processed to emphasise Hα gas in the star cluster.

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Kevin Fulcher, 13 November 2015.

Canon 70D camera on iOptron Skyguider mount. 300 mm Canon L lens at f/5.6. Stack of 10 frames at ISO 1000.

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David Murton, 07 November 2015.

Canon 60Da camera on Skywatcher adventurer mount, unguided. 90-300 mm lens at 190 mm. Stack of four 120 s exposures at ISO 1600, f/5.6. Taken at Shingle Street, on the east coast of Suffolk.

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David Murton, 25 October 2015.

Canon 60Da camera with 70-300 mm lens.

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Kev Fulcher, 21 September 2015.

Canon 70D with Canon 300 mm f5.6 lens. Four 30 s exposures at ISO 6400 plus dark frames and flat frames. Stacked in DSS and tweaked in Lightroom 6.

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Kev Fulcher, 20 December 2014.

80 mm apochromatic refractor. Twenty 5 s exposures stacked using DSS.

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David Murton, 13 December 2014.

William Optics ZS71 ED 71 mm, f/5.9 refractor on HEQ5 mount. Stack of eight 300 s exposures at ISO 400 with minimal additional processing.

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Kevin Fulcher, 23 August 2014.

80 mm refractor with Canon 30D camera. Single 20 s exposure.

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Kevin Fulcher, 23 August 2014.

200 mm reflector with Canon 30D camera. Single 20 s exposure.

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David Murton, 02 October 2014.

200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount with Canon 1100D camera.

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David Murton, 22 March 2014.

William Optics ZS71 ED 71 mm, f/5.9 refractor on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera and 0.8 focal reducer/flattener. Single 60 s exposure at ISO 800.

star_clusters/20131023_M45_DM.jpg

David Murton, 23 October 2013.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera at prime-focus. Single 30 s exposure at ISO 1600 with no post-processing.

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James Appleton, 27 October 1997.

Cosina 35 mm SLR camera with 135 mm lens at f/2.8. 60 s exposure on Kodak Royal Gold 1000 print film, scanned.


M56 (Cygnus)

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Details

star_clusters/20170726_M56_DM.jpg

David Murton, 26 July 2017.

Skywatcher 190 mm Maksutov-Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Stack of six 360 s exposures at ISO 800. Close-up image.


NGC188 (Cepheus)

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Details

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John Hughes, 21 January 2021.

William Optics Z61, ZWO ASI294MC Pro Cooled camera. Image is an LRGB composite, bin 1x1 and exposure time of 60 seconds. Numbers of exposures for LRGB are 63, 88, 82, 78. NGC188 is situated 5° from the celestial north pole. It is one of the oldest known open clusters, estimated to be 6-7 billion years of age. As is typical for such an age, the cluster contains no white main sequence stars and the brightest are mainly yellow giants. Surprisingly, the stars of the cluster have not drifted apart under the gravitational influence of our galaxy. This is believed to be due to the fact that it is located some 5,000 light years above the disc of the Milky Way, further than our Sun is from the centre of the galaxy.


NGC2281 (Auriga)

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Details

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John Hughes, 23 March 2019.

William Optics Z61, ZWO ASI294MC Pro Cooled camera. Incorrect back focus on the camera resulted in the image being heavily cropped. Twenty 100 s exposure light frames, 15 darks and 25 flats and bias frames.


NGC869 and NGC884 (η and χ Persei), the Double Cluster (Perseus)

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Details

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John Hughes, 09 October 2020.

William Optics Z103 refractor and ZWO ASI1600mm Pro Cooled camera. Thirty luminance subs at 180 s and 18 subs each over 300 s for red, green and blue.

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David Murton, 04 December 2016.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Ten 360 s exposure at ISO 400.

star_clusters/20151113_NGC869+NGC884_KJF_5798.jpg

Kevin Fulcher, 13 November 2015.

Canon 70D camera on iOptron Skyguider mount. 24 mm "pancake" lens.

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David Murton, 22 March 2014.

William Optics ZS71 ED 71 mm, f/5.9 refractor on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera and 0.8 focal reducer/flattener. Single 60 s exposure at ISO 800.

star_clusters/20131023_NGC869+NGC884_DM.jpg

David Murton, 23 October 2013.

Skywatcher 200PDS 200 mm f/5 Newtonian on HEQ5 mount. Canon 1100D camera at prime focus without additional magnification. Stack of three 30 s exposures at ISO 1600 with minimal additional processing. (Exposure time limited due to imperfect polar alignment.)

star_clusters/19971027_NGC869+NGC884_JMA.jpg

James Appleton, 27 October 1997.

Cosina 35 mm SLR camera with 135 mm lens at f/2.8. 75 s exposure on Kodak Royal Gold 1000 print film, scanned.


NGC457, The Owl Cluster (Cassiopeia)

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Details

star_clusters/20170817_NGC457_DM.jpg

David Murton, 17 August 2017.

Skywatcher 190 mm Maksutov-Newtonian on NEQ6 mount. Canon 60Da camera. Stack of fifteen 360 s exposures at ISO 800.

star_clusters/20161220_NGC457_AG.jpg

Andy Gibbs, 20 December 2016.

Explore Scientific ED80 CF apochromatic refractor on an HEQ5 mount with x0.7 reducer/corrector and Canon 1200D camera.

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Andy Gibbs, 11 September 2016.

Explore Scientific ED80 CF apochromatic refractor on an HEQ5 mount with Atik Infinity camera. Stack of approx 15 s exposures with minimal post-processing. (The image was captured to assess the capabilities of the camera itself.)

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Andy Gibbs, 11 December 2015.

Meade 200 mm LX 200 and Canon 1200d camera. The image is compromised by high-level cloud.


NGC4755, the Jewel Box Cluster (Crux)

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Mike Harlow, 13 March 2013.

My first image obtained with a remotely operated telescope belonging to iTelescope.net. NGC4755 (christened the "Jewel Box" by Sir John Herschel) is located in Crux at declination -60°. The bright star in the top right is β Crucis. The image is a stack of three 120 s exposures taken with a 90 mm f/5.6 refractor at Siding Springs.


NGC7380 (Cepheus)

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John Hughes, 21 September 2020.

Williams Optics Z103 refractor, ZWO ASI1600mm Pro Cooled camera and Chroma 1.25” 3 nm SII, Hα and OIII filters. Taken across two nights, 20-21 September 2020. NGC7380 is an open star cluster surrounded by an emission nebula. It was discovered by Caroline Herschel in 1787. In modern times, it has come to be known as the Wizard Nebula. Image captured from my garden in North Essex.


NGC7789 (Cassiopeia)

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John Hughes, 27 December 2020.

Williams Optics Z103 refractor and ZWO ASI1600mm Pro Cooled camera. Taken under a 93% illuminated Moon. The image is in the LRGB format and consists of 10 exposures of luminance at 60 seconds and RGB channels each of 20 exposures each over 120 seconds and binned at 2x2. NGC7789 was discovered by Caroline Herschel in 1783. It has no real clearly defined shape, however, the dark lanes curving between the stars give it the appearance of a rose and, for this reason, it is known informally as Caroline’s Rose. Some 8,000 light years from us it has a large number of orange and reddish stars indicating an age of 1.6 billion years.