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M 107

Globular Cluster M107 (NGC 6171), class X, in Ophiuchus

Right Ascension 16 : 32.5 (h:m)
Declination -13 : 03 (deg:m)
Distance 20.9 (kly)
Visual Brightness 7.9 (mag)
Apparent Dimension 10.0 (arc min)

Discovered by Pierre Méchain in 1782.

M107 is another additional object found by Pierre Méchain in April, 1782. Herewith, it is probably the Messier object which was the latest to be discovered. Eventually, Helen Sawyer Hogg added it to the Messier list in 1747. William Herschel, who had independently discovered it on May 12, 1793, listed this object as H VI.40.

M107 apparently contains some dark obscured regions, which is unusual for globular clusters. The star distribution is called "very open" by Kenneth Glyn Jones, who points out that this cluster "enables the interstellar regions to be examined more easily, and globular clusters are important `laboratories' in which to study the process by which galaxies evolve."

Visually, M107 is about 3 minutes of arc across, while in photos it extends over a region more than 3 times this diameter (about 10'). As its distance is about 21,000 light years, this corresponds to roughly 60 light years. M107 is approaching us at 147 km/sec, contains about 25 known variables, and as a globular cluster, is of intermediate metallicity (abundances of elements heavier than Helium).

  • Historical Observations and Descriptions of M107
  • More images of M107
  • Amateur images of M107

  • SIMBAD Data of M107
  • NED Data of M107
  • Observing Reports for M107 (IAAC Netastrocatalog)

    Hartmut Frommert (spider@seds.org)
    Christine Kronberg (smil@lrz.uni-muenchen.de)

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    Last Modification: 9 Dec 1999, 22:59 MET