Messier 36. NGC 1960. The Pinwheel Cluster

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Messier 36, sometimes referred to as the Pinwheel Cluster, is an open cluster located 4300 light years away, in the constellation Auriga. It lies about ten times farther away compared with the Pleiades, M45, making it one of the most distant clusters catalogued by Messier. It is also one of the faintest in this catalog, mag. +6.0. One characteristic that this cluster shares with M45 is that its stars show to have a rapid rotation speed.


Additional Information


Name(s): Messier 36. M36. NGC 1960. The Pinwheel Cluster

Type: Open Cluster

RA:  05h 36m 17s

Dec: +34º 07’ 54”

Constellation: Auriga

Size (arcmin): 10×10 arcmin

Magnitude: +6.0

Distance: 4300 ly


Date: 2021-03-04

Location: iTelescope, New Mexico Skies, Mayhill, NM, USA

Size (arcmin): 54×36 arcmin

Telescope: 20” (51 cm) f/4.5 Reflector

Camera: FLI PL11002 (4008x2672pix)

Guiding: Astrodon MonsterMOAG off-axis guider

Total exposure: 1.5 hours (RGB: 1.5h)

Processing: CCDStack, Photoshop CC 2021


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