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Messier 39 - Open Cluster in Cygnus Astrophotography

Updated: May 31, 2023

Another cluster photographed as a "secondary target" to end the night: Messier 39!

M39 is an open star cluster in the constellation of the Swan: Cygnus. You can see a blanket of stars in the background, with the cluster popping out. Messier 39 is one of the nearest clusters to Earth, after the Pleiades, the Beehive, and a couple of others.

We only spent one hour on this target, and the result is pretty neat!


Processing: Pixinsight


Total Exposure Time: 1 hour

Exposure Time per frame: 3 minutes

20 lights - 15 Darks - 15 Bias

ISO: 800

Star cluster astrophotography: Learn about the different types of star clusters.


How to Locate Messier 39

Messier 39 is located in the busy constellation of Cygnus, and can be seen with binoculars and any telescope!

IC 5146 (The Cocoon Nebula) can be seen not far from M39, but you probably will not be able to see them both in the same field even with small binoculars.

Messier Catalog: See our catalog of Messier objects that we have imaged so far.


Final Thoughts

This open cluster in Cygnus may seem like a boring target at first, but just one hour of imaging is enough to have a wonderful-looking photo. The stars pop out really easily, the background is filled with smaller ones, and the processing is a breeze! This is a good example of why you should not skip less famous objects and try them anyway!

Clear Skies,

Galactic Hunter

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