M3 (The Canes Cluster)
M3 (NGC 5272), Magnitude 6.20 Shapley-Sawyer Class VI Globular Cluster, Size 18.0'x18.0', Constellation: Canes Venatici.
Comments: Sure, I am always excited when the galaxies of spring return, but I'm almost as excited to see this monstrous, easily resolved (with apertures of 5 inches and above) cluster return to the skies. Since M3 sports some stars in the magnitude 12 range, my 5 inch ETX-125 makes quick work of it--well, of its periphery stars, anyway..
This big dog, possessed of upwards of 250,000 stars, is located about 34,000 light years from our cozy little globe.
As is the case with most globs, M3 is both easy and hard to image. It's easy to get a recognizable image, but difficult to get a really outstanding one. Precise focus is a must..
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