The Butterfly Cluster - M6 Open cluster in Scorpius

Uploaded 7/21/10/10

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 Resembling that four winged hexapod which pollinates our flowers, the Butterfly Cluster M6 is a huge and bright splashy cluster with brilliant blue super giants and a few orange giant K type stars in the mix. Centered in this image, M6 is 4.2nd magnitude and spans just over half a degree wide, the same apparent width as the full moon appears to our eyes. 80 stars are listed as cluster members in Megastar. The very obvious K3 super giant star on its north end (up) in this 2.5 degree field is 6th magnitude and is just visible to the naked eye on a very dark night.

The small dark patch of nebulosity to the clusters lower right is Barnard 275 and the general lack of stars on its left is Barnard 278.

Optics: 8" f/4 Newtonian Astrograph w/Baader MPCC Coma Corrector Platform: Astrophysics AP1200 Camera: Hutech Modified Canon XTi @ ISO800 Exposure: 3 x 5m Location: Payson, Arizona Elevation: 5150 ft. Sky: Seeing 4/10, Transparency 7/10 Outside Temperature: 75F Processing Tools: Photoshop CS2, Images Plus 3.82 HOME GALAXIES EMISSION NEBS REFLECTION NEBS COMETS GLOBULARS OPEN CLUST PLANETARIES LINKS