The Pleiades can be defined as a star cluster that is about 400 light years away from Earth. It is located near the constellations of Orion and Taurus in the night sky. There are seven bright stars included in this cluster. All of them can be seen with the naked human eye.
They also have other names like Messier 45 or the Seven Sisters. This star cluster is a close neighbors to our planet. It is about 110 arcminutes in size and has an apparent magnitude of 1.6.
Quick Facts: –
- The core star clusters within the Pleiades have a radius of about eight light years and its tidal radius is about 43 light years.
- Although there are more than 1,000 stars in this cluster but only six of them can be seen without any telescope.
- Just because of its huge size and brightness level, this star cluster is very easy to find in the sky.
- It also contains a notable number of brown dwarfs. They constitute up to 25 percent of all the stars in this cluster.
- These brown stars have less than 8 percent of the Sun’s mass. They are not heavy enough to ignite nuclear fusion in their cores.
- The estimated age of the Pleiades is ranging somewhere between 75 to 150 million years.
- A faint reflection nebula, also known as the Maia Nebula surrounds the brightest stars in the cluster.
- It also contains a diffuse reflection nebula named as the Merope Nebula.
- It is an open star cluster that means it will not stay gravitationally bound forever.