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