Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Messier M54

Messier M54 (NGC 6715) is a conspicuous globular cluster, which was discovered by Charles Messier on July 24, 1778. It is about 85,000 light years away from the Solar System and is situated in the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy which belongs to the Local Group of galaxies. The M54 is one of the most luminous known globular clusters with an absolute visual magnitude M_v of -10.01, a brilliance of about 850,000 suns like ours. It is outshined only by the spectacular Omega Centauri in our Milky Way.