Nightscapes & Deep Sky Colors

Astrophotography Brian A. Morganti

M5 - Globular Cluster



M5 (also catalogued as NGC 5904) is thought to be one of the oldest globular clusters in the Milky Way Galaxy with an estimated age of 13 billion years. This means that it must have formed only 200 million years after the Milky Way itself, which is thought to be 13.2 billion years old.  Spanning 165 light-years in diameter, M5 is one of the larger globular clusters known. The gravitational sphere of influence of M5, (i.e. the volume of space in which stars are gravitationally bound to it rather than being torn away by the Milky Way's gravitational pull) has a radius of some 200 light-years.

M5 shines at magnitude 5.7 and is located 24,500 light-years away from Earth.  It contains between 100,000 and 500,000 stars. It was discovered by Gottfried Kirch in 1702 and also noted by Charles Messier in 1764.

North is to the top in the above image.


  • Date & Location:  May 14, 2015 - StarEffects Observatory - Bernville, PA

  • Weather:  Light Breeze, average temp of 48F

  • Sky Conditions:  Clear with Above Average Transparency. 

  • SQM-L: Average 20.55

  • Optics:  TeleVue NP101is Refractor with 1.5x extender 810mm @ f8.1

  • Filter:  Astronomic  EOS clip-in CLS-CCD (Light Pollution Suppression)

  • Mount:  AstroPhysics AP900GTO

  • Guiding:  SSAG - 5 seconds exposures - Good Graph Overall.

  • Camera:  Canon T1i (500D) Hap Griffin Modified - Baader UV/IR

  • Exposure:  20 x 4min ISO800  (total 80 min)

  • Calibration Frames:  Darks, Bias 50F - 10 Field Flats w/Alnitak Flat Man

  • Processing:    Images Plus 5.75a, PS CS6, NIK filter tools 

  • Comments:  Excellent sky conditions and steady temperatures (holding focus) prevailed for this imaging session. 



Astrophotography  -  Nightscapes & Deep Sky Colors