M 45 – Les Pléiades


The Pleiades (M 45) are among the most famous star clusters. The name comes from Greek mythology. These are seven sisters who are represented by the main stars of this cluster.

The name, in Japanese, is Subaru and that is why their logo is inspired by the position of the main stars. This name was chosen by Subaru because the company results from the merger of 6 major companies and refers to the fact that 6 of these stars are visible to the naked eye. In fact, the number of visible stars depends on the darkness of the sky where it is observed and on the visual acuity of the observer. Some can see up to 12! The cluster comprises about 3000 stars and their distance is uncertain but currently estimated at 444 light years.

The nebulosity which surrounds these stars is not visible to the naked eye, nor to the telescope. Only long exposure photography makes it stand out.

Technical details:

Telescope: SkyWatcher Esprit 120mm f/7
Camera: Canon EOS T6
Exposure: 20 x 4 minutes at ISO 1600
Place: Réserve faunique LaVerendrye, Qc