Is It A Small Galaxy Or Large Globular Cluster?

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47 Tucanae taken by Dennis Hands using the Prompt 4 telescope in Chile.  20 second exposure on 1/9/2015


Tonight at Cline Observatory wewill to feature the famous Globular Cluster M13.

M 13 47 Tucanae
Magnitude 5.9 4.9
Discovered by Halley in 1714 By Lacaille in 1751
One million stars Millions of stars
Many old Red Giants X-ray sources, pulsars
> 23,000 light years away About 1,600 light years

Messier constructed his famous list to help colleagues find comets and not be fooled by these many pesky smudges in the sky. They wanted to find comets!  Lacaiile thought 47 Tucanae was, in fact, a comet when he found it.

Scientists think that maybe galaxies have supermassive Black Holes in the center and globular clusters do not.  47 Tucanae appears to have no Black Holes at all!

Cline Observatory, located on the Jamestown campus of Guilford Technical Community College, is open to the public every clear Friday night, free of charge.

From March thru October the regular Friday night public observing sessions begin about 30 minutes after sunset. Tonight the sun will set a little after 8:30. Sessions usually last about two hours.

The observatory is open to the night air so please dress appropriately.

For more information and directions please see the Observatory website at:

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