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M3 or M5?


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I was just having a quick scan of the sky before it got too bright (2:45-3am) and i was observing westwards..........quite low down when i noticed what CAN ONLY be described as a faint fuzzy. It was very faint but had quite a bright star right near to it (above it in my FOV). I was using my 130P with a 30mm EP fitter with a LPF. I quickly uped the magnification by inserting a 10mm EP and i could still see the faint patch of light. It was pretty perfectly round in shape. I tried everything to resolve it but couldnt get it as anything more then a faint patch of light. I blame my tired eyes.

Given my setup can anyone tell me which is more likely for the object to be? Stellarium shows them both to be pretty much similar looking.

Thanks in advance.

Whichever it was......(i'm leaning more towards M5)..........its my fist globular cluster.


Edited by LukeSkywatcher
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Ive seen M5 through the 130 dob and could easily make it out, mind you that was a month or so ago when darker skies were about, though as you say it was low down i would sway towards M5 all the same, looked on my planeterium at the time you said and it looks about right


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I was looking through TLAO and it looked like the sketch there of M3, but reading a description of both in another book it sounds more like M5 "Looks like the head of a comet. Has a single other star in the same FOV........5 Serpentis". It gave me a much better appreciation of just what Messier was doing when he compiled his list of "things not to be mistaken for comets". I thought i had seen a comet.

Arcturus was there but to be honest i cant remember if i was looking N of it or S of it. I'm pretty sure i was looking south of it so that would tie in with it being M5.

I'll have another go under darker skies a couple of hours earlier then i was observing.

Thanks all.

Edited by LukeSkywatcher
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