M10 Globular Cluster

Messier 10 (M10) is a rich, bright globular cluster located in the constellation Ophiuchus. A globular cluster is a spherical collection of stars that orbits a galactic core. Globular cluster are very tightly bound by gravity, which gives them their spherical shapes.

The cluster lies at a distance of 14,300 light years from Earth and has an apparent magnitude of 6.4. Messier 10 has a spatial diameter of 83 light years. The cluster’s estimated mass is 200,000 solar masses. Messier 10 contains about 100,000 stars. The stars in M10 have only 3.5 percent of the heavy elements found in the Sun, pointing to an age of 11.4 billion years. This makes M10 one of the younger globular clusters known.

Messier 10 lies about 16,000 light years, or 5,000 parsecs, from the galactic centre. It takes roughly 140 million years to complete an orbit around the Milky Way Galaxy. It crosses the plane of the Milky Way’s disk every 53 million years.

M10 is moving away from the solar system at a velocity of 69 km/s.

I took this image over 5.45 hours (15 images of 10 minutes each for Luminance and 9 images of 5 minutes each for each colors).

Here is a cropped version of the heart of the cluster.

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