Though only 283 light years away, the the 400-million-year-old Coma Berenices star cluster still appears faint to the eye. Spread out to the south of the modern constellation Canes Venatici (which itself is just south of the handle of the Big Dipper), this beautiful cluster is the most prominent part of the modern constellation of Coma Berenices, Berenices Hair. Only the central part within the modern boundaries of the constellation is shown here. The North Galactic Pole (defined by the perpendicular to the plane of our Galaxy) is toward the upper left-hand corner It is nicely marked by the brighter of the pair of stars, 31 Comae, "Polaris Galacticus Borealis."

To see a labelled image, push the star:

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For more on Coma Berenices, see Under the Handle at Stellar Stories.

Return to the Cluster Page.

By Jim Kaler. Return to STARS.