M45 - Pleiades

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M45 - Pleiades - Open Cluster in Taurus
Date: August 9, 2002 Time: 03:30 CST Location: Atoka Oklahoma
Instrument: 203mm f/1.5 Schmidt Camera Notes: 90mm f/11 Guidescope mounted on a DSBS using ST-4
Camera: none Exposure: 30 Minutes Film: Kodak RG100
Filter: #2B Process: C-41 No Push Mount: Losmandy GM-100

...The Pleiads, rising thro' the mellow shade,
Glitter like a swarm of fireflies
Tangled in a silver braid......"

The Seven Sisters, an Open Cluster in Tarus consists of as many as 250 members,
the brightest of which are Alcyone, Atlas, Electra, Maia, Merope, Taygeta, Pleione,
Celaeno and Asterope. One of the closest open clusters at approx 126 parsecs or
410 light years distant. Nine of the brightest members are all B type giants and are
concentrated in a region about seven light years in diameter. Suggested age of this
cluster is 20 million years based upon their stellar evolution. This cluster is drifting
through space in a SSE direction at an apparent rate of about 5.5" per 100 years.
The entire swarm of stars is enveloped in a faint diffuse nebulosity which appears
to shine by reflected light. Elusive for the visual observer this nebulosity becomes
much more visible and shows spectacular detail on long exposure photographs.