The star cluster cluster Messier 35, from a photograph made by Bill Keel with the 61-cm Baker-Schmidt telescope at Dyer Observatory (Nashville, Tennessee). The field of view is about 0.7 degrees east-west.
M35 is a beautiful object for binoculars or even a small telescope, often visible as a hazy spot to the unaided eye at the feet of Gemini. Somehow Bill managed to miss the fainter and more compact neighbor of M35, NGC 2158, which is only about 0.3 degrees to the southwest and seen in most images of M35.
Nearby open cluster M35 (NGC 2168) in Gemini. This image is an approximately true-color composite of CCD exposures obtained with the Burrell Schmidt telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory near Tucson, Arizona, taken in January 1997. Image size is 47.4' x 40.6'.
M35 is an intermediate-aged open cluster. It still contains many white and blueish hot stars; these massive stars are missing in older clusters as they are only short-lived. On the other hand, some bright orange and yellow giant stars are obvious, which have had enough time to evolve into this state of evolution.
This stellar population is in contrast to the much older one of the fainter
but more populated NGC 2158, a background object visible in the lower right
[South-West] of this image, which exhibits an older yellowish population.
Last Modification: November 29, 2002