Messier Objects

Messier Objects
Messier Objects

The Messier objects are a set of 110 astronomical objects cataloged by the French astronomer Charles Messier. They include galaxies, nebulae, and star clusters.

Below is a table with some basic details for each Messier object:

Messier NumberObject TypeCommon NameConstellationRA (J2000)Dec (J2000)MagSize (arcmin)Notes
M1Supernova RemnantCrab NebulaTaurus05h 34m 31s+22° 00′ 52″8.46.0Remnant of a supernova explosion
M2Globular ClusterMessier 2Aquarius21h 33m 27s-00° 49′ 24″6.316.0Rich globular cluster
M3Globular ClusterMessier 3Canes Venatici13h 42m 11s+28° 22′ 38″6.216.0Bright, dense globular cluster
M4Globular ClusterMessier 4Scorpius16h 23m 35s-26° 31′ 31″5.926.3Contains a strong X-ray source
M5Globular ClusterMessier 5Serpens15h 18m 33s+02° 05′ 27″5.723.1One of the oldest known globular clusters
M6Open ClusterButterfly ClusterScorpius17h 40m 20s-32° 13′ 02″4.220.0Easily visible to the naked eye
M7Open ClusterPtolemy’s ClusterScorpius17h 53m 51s-34° 47′ 35″3.380.0Contains about 80 stars
M8NebulaLagoon NebulaSagittarius18h 03m 37s-24° 23′ 12″6.090.0Active star-forming region
M9Globular ClusterMessier 9Ophiuchus17h 19m 12s-18° 30′ 57″8.412.0Close to the center of the Milky Way
M10Globular ClusterMessier 10Ophiuchus16h 57m 09s-04° 06′ 01″6.420.0Bright globular cluster
M11Open ClusterWild Duck ClusterScutum18h 51m 05s-06° 16′ 09″6.314.0Rich star cluster with dark lanes
M12Globular ClusterMessier 12Ophiuchus16h 47m 14s-01° 56′ 54″6.714.0Contains many variable stars
M13Globular ClusterGreat Hercules ClusterHercules16h 41m 41s+36° 27′ 36″5.820.0Brightest globular cluster in the N. Hem.
M14Globular ClusterMessier 14Ophiuchus17h 37m 36s-03° 15′ 24″7.611.0Contains a planetary nebula
M15Globular ClusterMessier 15Pegasus21h 29m 58s+12° 10′ 01″6.218.0Contains a large number of variable stars
M16NebulaEagle NebulaSerpens18h 18m 48s-13° 47′ 45″6.47.0Star-forming region with Pillars of Creation
M17NebulaOmega NebulaSagittarius18h 20m 26s-16° 10′ 36″6.011.0Active star-forming region
M18Open ClusterMessier 18Sagittarius18h 19m 58s-17° 08′ 42″7.59.0Part of a complex of star clusters
M19Globular ClusterMessier 19Ophiuchus17h 02m 37s-26° 16′ 05″7.217.0Elliptical shape with central bar
M20NebulaTrifid NebulaSagittarius18h 02m 23s-23° 01′ 48″6.328.0Combination of emission and reflection nebulae
M21Open ClusterMessier 21Sagittarius18h 04m 24s-22° 29′ 00″6.513.0Contains about 57 stars
M22Globular ClusterMessier 22Sagittarius18h 36m 24s-23° 54′ 12″5.132.0One of the brightest globular clusters
M23Open ClusterMessier 23Sagittarius17h 56m 24s-18° 59′ 30″6.927.0Open cluster with roughly 150 stars
M24Star CloudSmall Sagittarius Star CloudSagittarius18h 18m 36s-18° 24′ 00″Part of the Milky Way obscured by dust
M25Open ClusterMessier 25Sagittarius18h 31m 48s-19° 06′ 00″4.632.0Bright open cluster with nebulosity
M26Open ClusterMessier 26Scutum18h 45m 59s-09° 23′ 00″8.09.0Open cluster with a dense core
M27Planetary NebulaDumbbell NebulaVulpecula19h 59m 36s+22° 43′ 16″7.48.0Shaped like a prolate spheroid
M28Globular ClusterMessier 28Sagittarius18h 24m 32s-24° 52′ 11″6.811.0Contains RR Lyrae variable stars
M29Open ClusterMessier 29Cygnus20h 23m 57s+38° 31′ 07″7.17.0Loose open cluster with 50 stars
M30Globular ClusterMessier 30Capricornus21h 40m 22s-23° 10′ 47″7.212.0Rich in variable stars
M31GalaxyAndromeda GalaxyAndromeda00h 42m 44s+41° 16′ 09″3.4190.0Largest galaxy in the Local Group
M32GalaxyMessier 32Andromeda00h 42m 41s+40° 51′ 55″8.18.0Satellite galaxy of M31
M33GalaxyTriangulum GalaxyTriangulum01h 33m 50s+30° 39′ 37″5.770.0Member of the Local Group
M34Open ClusterMessier 34Perseus02h 42m 07s+42° 47′ 07″5.535.0Contains about 100 stars
M35Open ClusterMessier 35Gemini06h 08m 54s+24° 20′ 00″5.328.0Rich open cluster with over 200 stars
M36Open ClusterMessier 36Auriga05h 36m 18s+34° 08′ 00″6.014.0Young open cluster
M37Open ClusterMessier 37Auriga05h 52m 18s+32° 33′ 02″5.624.0Rich open cluster with 500 stars
M38Open ClusterMessier 38Auriga05h 28m 42s+35° 50′ 00″6.421.0Contains an associated reflection nebula
M39Open ClusterMessier 39Cygnus21h 32m 06s+48° 26′ 00″4.632.0Part of the Cygnus OB1 association
M40Double StarWinnecke 4Ursa Major12h 22m 13s+58° 04′ 59″9.1Not originally included by Messier
M41Open ClusterMessier 41Canis Major06h 46m 00s-20° 46′ 00″4.538.0Bright open cluster with 100 stars
M42NebulaOrion NebulaOrion05h 35m 17s-05° 23′ 28″4.065.0Emission nebula in the Orion Molecular Cloud
M43NebulaDe Mairan’s NebulaOrion05h 35m 31s-05° 16′ 02″9.020.0Part of the Orion Nebula complex
M44Open ClusterBeehive ClusterCancer08h 40m 06s+19° 59′ 00″3.195.0Bright open cluster with over 1,000 stars
M45Open ClusterPleiadesTaurus03h 47m 24s+24° 07′ 00″1.6110.0Bright and well-known open cluster
M46Open ClusterMessier 46Puppis07h 41m 46s-14° 49′ 00″6.127.0Contains a planetary nebula
M47Open ClusterMessier 47Puppis07h 36m 36s-14° 30′ 00″4.230.0Rich open cluster with 50 stars
M48Open ClusterMessier 48Hydra08h 13m 42s-05° 45′ 00″5.554.0Contains over 80 stars
M49Elliptical GalaxyMessier 49Virgo12h 29m 46s+08° 00′ 02″8.49.0Member of the Virgo Cluster
M50Open ClusterMessier 50Monoceros07h 03m 54s-08° 20′ 00″5.916.0Contains about 200 stars
M51GalaxyWhirlpool GalaxyCanes Venatici13h 29m 52s+47° 11′ 43″8.412.0Interacting galaxy pair
M52Open ClusterMessier 52Cassiopeia23h 24m 48s+61° 35′ 00″6.913.0Rich open cluster with about 200 stars
M53Globular ClusterMessier 53Coma Berenices13h 12m 55s+18° 10′ 05″7.713.0Elliptical globular cluster
M54Globular ClusterMessier 54Sagittarius18h 55m 03s-30° 28′ 47″7.611.0In the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy
M55Globular ClusterMessier 55Sagittarius19h 39m 59s-30° 57′ 44″7.019.0Rich, dense globular cluster
M56Globular ClusterMessier 56Lyra19h 16m 35s+30° 11′ 00″8.38.0Contains RR Lyrae variable stars
M57Planetary NebulaRing NebulaLyra18h 53m 35s+33° 02′ 37″8.81.4×1.0Formed by expanding shell of ionized gas
M58Spiral GalaxyMessier 58Virgo12h 37m 43s+11° 49′ 05″9.75.5×4.5Part of the Virgo Cluster
M59Elliptical GalaxyMessier 59Virgo12h 42m 02s+11° 38′ 48″9.65.5×4.5Part of the Virgo Cluster
M60Elliptical GalaxyMessier 60Virgo12h 43m 40s+11° 33′ 08″8.87.6×6.2Part of the Virgo Cluster
M61Spiral GalaxyMessier 61Virgo12h 21m 54s+04° 28′ 25″9.76.5×5.9Part of the Virgo Cluster
M62Globular ClusterMessier 62Ophiuchus17h 01m 12s-30° 06′ 44″6.515.0Elliptical globular cluster
M63Spiral GalaxySunflower GalaxyCanes Venatici13h 15m 49s+42° 01′ 45″8.612.6×7.2Also known as the Black Eye Galaxy
M64Spiral GalaxyBlack Eye GalaxyComa Berenices12h 56m 43s+21° 41′ 24″8.59.3×5.4Distinct dark band of absorbing dust
M65Spiral GalaxyMessier 65Leo11h 18m 55s+13° 05′ 31″9.38.0×1.6Part of the Leo Triplet
M66Spiral GalaxyMessier 66Leo11h 20m 15s+12° 59′ 29″8.99.1×4.2Part of the Leo Triplet
M67Open ClusterMessier 67Cancer08h 51m 18s+11° 49′ 00″6.125.0Older than most open clusters
M68Globular ClusterMessier 68Hydra12h 39m 28s-26° 44′ 34″7.811.0Elliptical globular cluster
M69Globular ClusterMessier 69Sagittarius18h 31m 23s-32° 20′ 53″7.67.0Part of the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy
M70Globular ClusterMessier 70Sagittarius18h 43m 12s-32° 18′ 12″7.97.0Part of the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy
M71Globular ClusterMessier 71Sagitta19h 53m 46s+18° 46′ 45″7.97.0Unusual for a globular cluster
M72Globular ClusterMessier 72Aquarius20h 53m 27s-12° 32′ 14″9.36.0Elliptical globular cluster
M73AsterismMessier 73Aquarius20h 59m 00s-12° 38′ 00″9.0Asterism of four stars
M74Spiral GalaxyMessier 74Pisces01h 36m 41s+15° 47′ 00″10.010.0×9.4Low surface brightness spiral galaxy
M75Globular ClusterMessier 75Sagittarius20h 06m 04s-21° 55′ 17″8.56.0Elliptical globular cluster
M76Planetary NebulaLittle Dumbbell NebulaPerseus01h 42m 19s+51° 34′ 32″11.12.7×1.8Bipolar planetary nebula
M77Spiral GalaxyMessier 77Cetus02h 42m 40s-00° 00′ 47″8.97.0×6.0Active galactic nucleus
M78Reflection NebulaMessier 78Orion05h 46m 45s+00° 03′ 00″8.38.0Reflection nebula in Orion Molecular Cloud
M79Globular ClusterMessier 79Lepus05h 24m 11s-24° 31′ 00″7.79.0Elliptical globular cluster
M80Globular ClusterMessier 80Scorpius16h 17m 02s-22° 58′ 33″7.38.9Rich globular cluster with a central bar
M81Spiral GalaxyBode’s GalaxyUrsa Major09h 55m 33s+69° 03′ 55″6.921.0×11.0Interacting galaxy pair with M82
M82Irregular GalaxyCigar GalaxyUrsa Major09h 55m 52s+69° 40′ 47″8.411.0×4.4Starburst galaxy with intense star formation
M83Spiral GalaxySouthern Pinwheel GalaxyHydra13h 37m 00s-29° 52′ 00″7.613.1×12.9Barred spiral galaxy
M84Lenticular GalaxyMessier 84Virgo12h 25m 03s+12° 53′ 13″9.15.3×5.1Elliptical galaxy with a dust lane
M85Lenticular GalaxyMessier 85Coma Berenices12h 25m 24s+18° 11′ 27″9.17.1×5.8Elliptical galaxy in the Virgo Cluster
M86Lenticular GalaxyMessier 86Virgo12h 26m 12s+12° 56′ 45″8.98.9×5.8Elliptical galaxy in the Virgo Cluster
M87Elliptical GalaxyVirgo AVirgo12h 30m 49s+12° 23′ 28″8.67.2×6.8Giant elliptical galaxy with a jet
M88Spiral GalaxyMessier 88Coma Berenices12h 32m 41s+14° 25′ 13″9.66.0×4.8Spiral galaxy in the Virgo Cluster
M89Elliptical GalaxyMessier 89Virgo12h 35m 39s+12° 33′ 23″9.85.2×4.9Elliptical galaxy in the Virgo Cluster
M90Spiral GalaxyMessier 90Virgo12h 36m 49s+13° 10′ 32″9.59.0×5.6Spiral galaxy in the Virgo Cluster
M91Spiral GalaxyMessier 91Coma Berenices12h 35m 26s+14° 29′ 47″10.25.5×4.8Spiral galaxy in the Virgo Cluster
M92Globular ClusterMessier 92Hercules17h 17m 07s+43° 08′ 12″6.414.0Bright, compact globular cluster
M93Open ClusterMessier 93Puppis07h 44m 00s-23° 52′ 00″6.022.0Open cluster with about 80 stars
M94Spiral GalaxyMessier 94Canes Venatici12h 50m 53s+41° 07′ 14″8.211.0×9.0Spiral galaxy with a central ring
M95Barred Spiral GalaxyMessier 95Leo10h 43m 57s+11° 41′ 03″9.77.0×5.0Barred spiral galaxy
M96Spiral GalaxyMessier 96Leo10h 46m 45s+11° 49′ 12″9.26.0×5.0Spiral galaxy with a faint outer ring
M97Planetary NebulaOwl NebulaUrsa Major11h 14m 47s+55° 01′ 09″9.93.4×3.3Planetary nebula with a dark “eye”
M98Spiral GalaxyMessier 98Coma Berenices12h 13m 48s+14° 54′ 01″10.19.8×2.8Spiral galaxy with faint arms
M99Spiral GalaxyMessier 99Coma Berenices12h 18m 49s+14° 25′ 11″9.94.8×4.2Spiral galaxy with a bright core
M100Spiral GalaxyMessier 100Coma Berenices12h 22m 54s+15° 49′ 21″9.47.0×6.1Grand design spiral galaxy
M101Spiral GalaxyPinwheel GalaxyUrsa Major14h 03m 12s+54° 20′ 57″7.927.0×26.0Spiral galaxy with prominent arms
M102GalaxySpindle GalaxyDraco15h 06m 27s+55° 45′ 42″9.76.9×2.0Later identified as NGC 5866
M103Open ClusterMessier 103Cassiopeia01h 33m 19s+60° 42′ 26″7.46.0Open cluster with about 40 stars
M104Spiral GalaxySombrero GalaxyVirgo12h 39m 59s-11° 37′ 22″8.09.4×4.6Spiral galaxy with a bright nucleus
M105Elliptical GalaxyMessier 105Leo10h 47m 49s+12° 34′ 54″9.34.8×4.4Elliptical galaxy in the Leo I Group
M106Spiral GalaxyMessier 106Canes Venatici12h 18m 57s+47° 18′ 14″8.418.0×8.4Seyfert II galaxy with an active nucleus
M107Globular ClusterMessier 107Ophiuchus16h 32m 31s-13° 03′ 13″7.913.0Elliptical globular cluster
M108Spiral GalaxyMessier 108Ursa Major11h 11m 31s+55° 40′ 26″10.08.6×2.2Edge-on spiral galaxy
M109Barred Spiral GalaxyMessier 109Ursa Major11h 57m 36s+53° 22′ 28″9.87.0×4.6Barred spiral galaxy
M110Elliptical GalaxyMessier 110Andromeda00h 40m 22s+41° 41′ 07″8.517.0×9.0Satellite galaxy of M31


PixelatedDad, the 8-bit gaming guru who's a few pixels short of a full sprite. Despite my age, I'm still young at heart and can often be found playing games that are older than my kids. I've got the reflexes of a sloth and the aim of a blindfolded monkey, but that doesn't stop me from trying to save the pixelated princess. Meet the ultimate multitasker - Pixelated princess saver, Husband, Geek, and proud Dad! When I'm not busy wrangling my two sets of twins (yep #TwinsTwice) or coding away on my computer, taking pictures of the night sky or designing and printing 3d bits of plastic, you can find me snuggling up with my furry sidekick, Doggo McStuffin.

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