M13 - The Hercules Globular Cluster


M13 - The Great Globular Cluster in Hercules
Mag 5.8, 20 arcminutes across
RA 16:41.7 Dec 36 28'
This from SEDS.ORG:

Discovered by Edmond Halley in 1714.

M13, also called the `Great globular cluster in Hercules', is one of the most prominent and best known globulars of the Northern celestial hemisphere. It was discovered by Edmond Halley in 1714, who noted that `it shows itself to the naked eye when the sky is serene and the Moon absent.' According to Charles Messier, who cataloged it on June 1, 1764, it is also reported in John Bevis' "English" Celestial Atlas.

At its distance of 25,100 light years, its angular diameter of 20' corresponds to a linear 145 light years - visually, it is perhaps 13' large. It contains several 100,000 stars; Timothy Ferris in his book Galaxies even says "more than a million". Towards its center, stars are about 500 times more concentrated than in the solar neighborhood. The age of M13 has been determined by Sandage as 24 billion years and by Arp as 17 billion years around 1960; Arp later (in 1962) revised his value to 14 billion years (taken from Kenneth Glyn Jones).

According to Kenneth Glyn Jones, M13 is peculiar in containing one young blue star, Barnard No. 29, of spectral type B2. The membership of this star was confirmed by radial velocity measurement, and is strange for such an old cluster - apparently it is a captured field star.

ST-10XME with Tak FSQ
Astrodon RGB filter set
6 x 10 minutes in each of RGB
Self guided on an AP900QMD
Flesherton, Ontario, Canada
August 12, 2006
Ambient temp +10C; camera temp -15C; Moon approaching last quarter
Images acquired and darks & flats applied in CCDSoft v5.0
Images aligned and combines in Maxim
Colour channels assembled in PS CS2.
Levels, curves, some sharpening and noise reduction in PS CS2
SCNR from PixInsight LE