M55 is one of a total of fifteen Messier objects in the constellation Sagittarius, which has the most Messier obects of any constellation. The globular star cluster was discovered by Lacaille in 1752, and confirmed by Charles Messier in the summar of 1778. The Herschels were probably the first to resolve this object into a swarm of faint stars. This magnitude 6.3 globular is about 20,000 light-years away, and is one of the among the closest globular star clusters. M55 is about 80 light-years in diameter. M55 can be detected with binoculars under dark skies. It is a relatively large globular, but appears to be loosely structured.
This is a composite RGB CCD image taken with a Takahashi FCT-150 telescope. The CCD camera was an SBIG ST-8XE using a CFW-8 color filter wheel. This image was taken from my backyard in Scottsdale, Arizona.
M55 (NGC 6809)
RA: 19h 40m 24s Dec: -30d 56' 53"
April 22, 2006
Image by Sid Leach
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