Mar­vel at Melotte 111

Sky at Night Magazine - - HOTSHOTS -

Dif­fi­culty level: Be­gin­ner

It’s fair to say that many of spring’s finest ce­les­tial splen­dours need a good tele­scope to see them in their glory, or at all. But there’s one con­spic­u­ous ex­cep­tion to this rule – the beau­ti­ful group­ing of stars clas­si­fied as Melotte 111. From most sites free from the harsh­est lev­els of light pol­lu­tion this stel­lar gath­er­ing is eas­ily vis­i­ble to the naked eye in the con­stel­la­tion of Coma Berenices, nes­tled be­tween the bright stars of Leo and Boötes to the east. Melotte 111 is a su­perb tar­get for binoc­u­lars with their very wide fields of view; it’s a par­tic­u­larly daz­zling sight in a good pair of 10x50s or 15x70s from a dark-sky site, with the glit­ter­ing stars sparkling away against the inky black. It’s a won­der­ful thing to set eyes on and proof that you don’t al­ways need a huge, ex­pen­sive tele­scope to en­joy some of the night sky’s real trea­sures.

Melotte 111 con­tains about 50 stars spread over 6 de­grees of sky

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.