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Contains:  M 34, NGC 1039
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open cluster M34, 


            Thomas Richter
open cluster M34
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open cluster M34

Technical card

Imaging telescope or lens:GSO 8" f/5 Newton

Imaging camera:Canon EOS 450Da

Mount:SkyWatcher NEQ6 Pro Goto

Guiding telescope or lens:Viewfinder 8x50

Guiding camera:Astrolumina Alccd5L-IIc

Focal reducer:TS Coma corrector 2"

Software:PHD2 GuidingDSS, Fitswork, Gimp

Dates:Nov. 1, 2015

Frames: 70x120" ISO400

Integration: 2.3 hours

Flats: ~30

Bias: ~30

Avg. Moon age: 20.20 days

Avg. Moon phase: 70.18%

Temperature: 5.00

Basic astrometry details job: 831571

RA center: 2h 42' 9"

DEC center: +42° 41' 52"

Pixel scale: 1.178 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: 165.212 degrees

Field radius: 0.790 degrees

Resolution: 4020x2680

Locations: Nürnberg, Nürnberg, Bayern, Germany


Open cluster M34
The picture also contains the little PN Abell 4.

Object description (

Messier 34 (also known as M 34 or NGC 1039) is an open cluster in the constellation Perseus. It was probably discovered by Giovanni Batista Hodierna before 1654 and included by Charles Messier in his catalog of comet-like objects in 1764. Messier described it as, "A cluster of small stars a little below the parallel of γ (Andromedae). In an ordinary telescope of 3 feet one can distinguish the stars."

Based on the distance modulus of 8.38, this cluster is located at a distance of about 470 parsecs, or 1,500 light years. For stars in the range from 0.12 to 1.0 solar masses, M34 contains an estimated 400 members. It spans about 35' on the sky which translates to a true radius of 7 light years. The cluster is just visible to the naked eye in very dark conditions, well away from city lights. It is possible to see it in binoculars when light pollution is limited.

The age of this cluster lies between the respective ages of the Pleiades open cluster at 100 million years and the Hyades open cluster at 800 million years. Comparisons between the observed stellar spectra and the values predicted by stellar evolutionary models gives an age estimate of 200–250 million years for M34. This is roughly the age at which stars with 0.5 solar masses enter the main sequence. By comparison, stars like the Sun enter the main sequence after 30 million years.



Thomas Richter
License: None (All rights reserved)


  • open cluster M34, 


            Thomas Richter
  • Final
    open cluster M34, 


            Thomas Richter

Sky plot

Sky plot


open cluster M34, 


            Thomas Richter