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NGC 6539


The loose globular cluster NGC 6539 lies in the central regions of the Galaxy, about 25,000 light years from the Solar System.

The region of the Milky Way running from Ophiuchus to Serpens Cauda - the Serpent Holder and the Serpent's Tail - is a part of the sky looking in the approximate direction of the Galaxy's core, and is busy with globular clusters. Most prominent among these is M14, but to the south and east of that cluster is NGC 6539, lying just within the borders of Serpens.

NGC 6539 is marginally closer to the Solar System than M14, but its immense distance of more than 25,000 light years places it in the vicinity of the Galaxy's central bulge. This is a loose accumulation of stars, not so distinctly globular as many clusters of this type, occupying a very approximate sphere some sixty light years in diameter.


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