Messier 5


Messier 5
M 5
Messier 5 Hubble WikiSky.jpg
Messier 5 by Hubble Space Telescope. 2.85′ view
Credit: NASA/STScI/WikiSky
Observation data (J2000 epoch)
Class V
Constellation Serpens
Right ascension 15h 18m 33.75s[1]
Declination +02° 04′ 57.7″[1]
Distance 24.5 kly (7.5 kpc)
Apparent magnitude (V) +6.65[1]
Apparent dimensions (V) 23′.0
Physical characteristics
Radius 80 ly
Estimated age 13 Gyr
Other designations NGC 5904[1]
See also: Globular cluster, List of globular clusters

Messier 5 or M5 (also designated NGC 5904) is a globular cluster in the constellation Serpens. It was discovered by Gottfried Kirch in 1702. It should not be confused with the much fainter and more distant globular cluster Palomar 5, which is situated nearby in the sky.


Discovery and visibility

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.

M5 was discovered by the German astronomer Gottfried Kirch in 1702 when he was observing a comet. Charles Messier also noted it in 1764, but thought it a nebula without any stars associated with it. William Herschel was the first to resolve individual stars in the cluster in 1791, counting roughly 200.

Characteristics

M5 wide angle by Robert J. Vanderbei

Spanning 165 light-years in diameter, M5 is one of the larger globular clusters known. The gravitational sphere of influence of M5, (i.e. the volume of space in which stars are gravitationally bound to it rather than being torn away by the Milky Way's gravitational pull) has a radius of some 200 light-years.

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.

Notable stars

105 stars in M5 are known to be variable in brightness, 97 of them belonging to the RR Lyrae type. RR Lyrae stars, sometimes referred to as "Cluster Variables", are somewhat similar to Cepheid type variables and as such can be used as a tool to measure distances in outer space since the relation between their luminosities and periods are well known. The brightest and most easily observed variable in M5 varies from magnitude 10.6 to 12.1 in a period of just under 26.5 days.

A dwarf nova has also been observed in this cluster.

References

  1. ^ a b c d "Messier 5". SIMBAD Astronomical Database. http://simbad.u-strasbg.fr/simbad/sim-id?Ident=Messier+5. Retrieved 2006-11-15. 

External links

Coordinates: Sky map 15h 18m 33.75s, +02° 04′ 57.7″


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Messier 90 — Observation data Epoch J2000 Constellation Virgo[ …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 91 — Spiral Galaxy M91 Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation Coma Berenices Right ascension …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 60 — M60 by 2MASS Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation Virgo[ …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 98 — Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation Coma Berenices …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 99 — A near infrared image of M99. Credit: 2MASS/NASA. Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 83 — An ESO image of Messier 83. Credit: ESO. Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation Hydra …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 73 — Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation Aquarius …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 41 — Credit: 2MASS/NASA Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation …   Wikipedia

  • Messier 74 — Observation data (J2000 epoch) Constellation Pisces …   Wikipedia

  • Messier — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Charles Messier (1730–1817), französischer Astronom Éric Messier (* 1973), kanadischer Eishockeyspieler George Messier (1896–1933), französischer Industrieller Jean Marie Messier, französischer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Messier 15 — M15 photographed by HST. The planetary nebula Pease 1 can be seen as a small blue object to the lower left of the core of the cluster. Observation …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.