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Clusters Nebulae Galaxies

Image Credit: NASA
Tonight | Nov 12, 2015

Small Magellanic Cloud, a nearby dwarf galaxy

The Small Magellanic Cloud resembles a luminous cloud, but it’s really a nearby dwarf galaxy, orbiting our Milky Way.

Photo Credit: Bob Star
Blogs | Tonight | Oct 14, 2015

Double Cluster in Perseus: Two star clusters

Charles Messier didn’t include the Double Cluster in his famous catalog. That’s probably because there’s nothing like this magnificent cluster anywhere in the sky.

Great galaxy in Andromeda
Science Wire | Sep 19, 2015

Andromeda galaxy is Milky Way’s next-door neighbor

At 2.3 million light-years, the Andromeda galaxy is the closest spiral galaxy to our Milky Way. It’s the most distant thing you can see with your eye alone.

Photo Credit:  coliwabl
Tonight | Jul 08, 2015

M6 and M7: Deep-sky gems in Tail of Scorpius

They may well be the finest star clusters visible at this time of year, and they’re easy to spot near the Scorpion’s Tail, if you have a dark sky.

M4 via ESO
Tonight | Jul 02, 2015

Find M4, a globular cluster by the Scorpion’s heart

In a dark sky, look for fuzzy object near bright Antares in the constellation Scorpius. This is M4, one of the closest globular star clusters to our solar system.

Tonight | Jun 09, 2015

M5, your new favorite globular cluster

Sure, M13, the Great Hercules cluster is wonderful. But some amateur astronomers say this cluster, M5, is even better.

Photo Credit: Spitzer Space Telescope
Tonight | Jun 02, 2015

Omega Centauri is our galaxy’s largest globular star cluster

Omega Centauri is the largest globular cluster known in the Milky Way galaxy. You can spot it soon after sunset on these June evenings.

Coma Cluster of galaxies by Justin Ng.
Tonight | Apr 06, 2015

Coma Cluster of galaxies

The Coma Cluster is one of the richest galaxy clusters known. How many suns and how many worlds might be located in this direction of space?

Photo Credit:  Wil Milan
Tonight | Feb 23, 2015

Beehive: 1,000 stars in Cancer

You might notice it a smudge in a dark sky, with three times the moon’s diameter. It’s really a wondrous cluster of stars called the Beehive, or M44.

Photo Credit: zamb0ni
Tonight | Jan 30, 2015

Orion Nebula is a place where new stars are born

On some moonless night, look for the Orion Nebula below Orion’s Belt. Your eye sees it as a tiny, hazy spot. But it’s a vast region of star formation.

The Hyades.  Copyright Jerry Lodriguss/ AstroPix.com
Tonight | Jan 10, 2015

V-shaped Hyades star cluster easy to find

The Hyades star cluster represents the Face of Taurus the Bull. The cluster is easy to spot and beautiful in binoculars.

Tonight | Dec 26, 2014

Large Magellanic Cloud is spectacular from Earth’s Southern Hemisphere

From tropical or Southern Hemisphere latitudes, the Large Magellanic Cloud is easy to see and spectacular! Look for it in the evening from December to April.

Photo Credit:  Richard Hammar
Tonight | Nov 30, 2014

Triangulum galaxy, aka M33, second-closest spiral galaxy

It’s 2.7 million light-years away, and the third-largest member of our Local Group, after the Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies.

Pleiades star cluster, aka the Seven Sisters.
Tonight | Nov 12, 2014

Pleiades star cluster: Famous Seven Sisters

Frosty November is often called the month of the Pleiades, because it’s when this star cluster – sometimes called the Seven Sisters – shines from dusk until dawn.

M8  via ESO/S. Guisard/S. Brunier
Tonight | Aug 26, 2014

Messier 8 is the Lagoon Nebula

The Lagoon Nebula aka M8 is the largest and brightest of a number of nebulosities in and around Sagittarius.

M17 via the Very Large Telescope
Tonight | Aug 25, 2014

M17 is the Omega Nebula

Barely visible to the unaided eye on a dark, moonless night, the Omega Nebula (Messier 17) is best seen through binoculars, or low power in a telescope.

Trifid Hubble via Hubble Space Telescope
Tonight | Aug 18, 2014

The Trifid Nebula, or M20

The Trifid is a famous summertime binocular object. Its name means “divided into three lobes.” If you view this nebula through a telescope, you’ll see why.

Trifid Nebula, aka M20, by Martin MacPhee
Blogs | Photos | Tonight | Aug 18, 2014

Exploring the Trifid Nebula

It’s a stellar nursery, a cluster of young stars, a bright red emission nebula, a lovely blue reflection nebula, and an interesting dark nebula divided into three …

Photo Credit:  NASA
Tonight | Jul 29, 2014

M11: Wild Duck Cluster

The Wild Duck Cluster (Messier 11) is found in the constellation Scutum the Shield, just south of the Eagle’s Tail in the constellation Aquila. Unless you have eagle eyes, don’t expect to see this distant star cluster with the eye alone. Starting from the star Altair, star-hop to M11’s general location. Then find it with binoculars!

Pillars of Creation 1995, via Hubble
Blogs | Photos | Tonight | Jul 08, 2014

The awesome beauty of M16, the Eagle Nebula

Here is the famous Pillars of Creation photo taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. It’s one of the features within the Eagle Nebula.

Photo Credit:  Eclipse.sx
Tonight | Jun 29, 2014

Great Rift: Dark area in the Milky Way

Outside on a dark summer night, looking edgewise into our galaxy’s disk, you’ll notice a long, dark lane dividing the bright starry band of the Milky Way. This is the Great Rift.