Open star clusters are widely distributed in our galaxy and represent a loose collection of stars which number from a
few dozen to a few hundred stars and are weakly-held gravitationally. Perhaps the three most famous such open clusters
are the Pleiades (M45) in Taurus, the Beehive (M44) in Cancer and the double cluster in Perseus. They are all
characterized with a handful of hot and white prominent stars and nebular material surrounding these stars.
Note: Although some confusion existed initially as to whether NGC 6882 and NGC 6885 are distinct and separate clusters, it has now been determined that the member stars really represent one open cluster, namely NGC 6885, with NGC 6882 now discarded as a catalog entry. NGC 6885 lies in Vulpecula, near the Cygnus border, and is surrounded by M27, the nebula IC 4964 and the open cluster NGC 6940. The cluster is dominated by a bright central star (20 Vul/SAO 88339, mag 5.91) and lies approximately 1,950 light-years away. The cluster's age has been estimated to be 1.45 billion years-old, thus making it a relatively older cluster. A search of the academic literature reveals findings involving pulsating and eclipsing binary variables in the immediate vicinity of NGC 6885 (see Hintz and Rose, 2005). NGC 6885 was discovered by William Herschel in 1784 and who is also the source of the confusion related to NGC 6882 which he also catalogued (presumably while looking at the same cluster but without realizing it).
Please click on the image below to display in higher resolution (1200 x 900)
Cr 417, OCL 132, C37
III 2 m
RA / Dec:
20h 12m 00s /
26° 28' 44"
Aug 15-16, 2012
20:00 - 00:20 UT+3
AP 305/f3.8 Riccardi-Honders
AP 1200GTO GEM
SBIG LRGB filters
1.21" per pixel