When winter is here, so is one of the most magnificent star clusters in the sky, the Pleiades. You can observe them with the unaided eye from almost any location during these winter evenings. They are bright enough to be seen even from most cities or other light polluted areas.
Of course, if you can escape the most glaring city lights, the Pleiades cluster will stand out more prominently. And if you proceed from suburbia to rural skies, things will get even more spectacular with the Seven Sisters, another name by which the Pleiades are known. They become stunning from all locations when you switch to binoculars for observing. That’s when the brilliant hot stars that form this relatively young star cluster almost appear to radiate with a faint glow.
Our image of M45, which is the official Messier Catalogue designation of the Pleiades, shows the star cluster as it looks in typical binoculars. We digitally combined two series of shots with different exposure times with another set of diffusor shots to get the final image. Some processing was used to make the image appear as seen through binoculars. This is the fourth in our series of binocular simulations, which include the Perseus Double Cluster, the M46/47 pair and the Beehive Cluster. Find them all on our website.
With this Pleiades image we would like to thank all our friends and followers for their ongoing encouragement. Special thanks go to our sponsors and media partners for their generous support of our activities to help protect the dark night skies. We wish you all a prosperous and happy New Year 2018!