(47 Tuc, NGC 104)
47 Tucanae is one of the most beautiful and, after Omega Centauri, the second
largest globular clusters there is. It is situated in the constellation »Toucan«,
next to the Small Magellanic Cloud, in a distance of in an average 15 000 light-years.
Observed with the naked eye 47 Tuc is only a small, diffuse spot. Using a telescope
however it resolves into countless small single stars packed together. The better
the telescope then, the more single stars get visible and the clearer the bright
Globular clusters consist of several thousand stars, that mass together in very
little space. Mostly they're situated outside the galactic disk (the level the Milky
Way forms in the sky) in the so called »Halo«, a sphere that surrounds our galaxy.
Globular Clusters are very old objects. They contain many »Red Giants« and some of their
stars are among the oldest of our galaxy.
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