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Messier 62 globular star cluster, Hubble image

Messier 62 globular star cluster, Hubble image

C046/8432

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26.8 MB (10.6 MB compressed)

3000 x 3127 pixels

25.4 x 26.4 cm ⏐ 10.0 x 10.4 in (300dpi)

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Credit

NASA, ESA, STSCI, AND S. ANDERSON (UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON) AND J. CHANAME (PONTIFICIA UNIVERSIDAD CAT LICA DE CHILE) / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA, ESA, STSCI, AND S. ANDERSON (UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON) AND J. CHANAME (PONTIFICIA UNIVERSIDAD CAT LICA DE CHILE) / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Messier 62 is a ball of stars (globular cluster) located in the southern constellation Ophiuchus at a distance of 22,200 light-years from Earth. The cluster contains around 150,000 stars and is thought to be 11.78 billion years old. Messier 62 has a highly irregular shape for a globular cluster. This may be a result of the cluster lying near the centre of the Milky Way and being affected by tidal forces. Charles Messier, the 18th century French astronomer, catalogued over 100 galaxies and clusters. Through the telescopes available at the time, comets, nebulae, globular clusters and galaxies appeared just as faint, diffuse blobs. This image was taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope's Advanced Camera for Surveys and Wide Field Camera 3 in ultraviolet and visible light.

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