The globular cluster M3 lies in the constellation Canes Venatici, on the border with Bootes. Although it may contain as many stars at the
Great Hercules Cluster M13, it is a third farther away at a distance of about 33,000 light years, and therefore somewhat dimmer and visually
smaller. Furthermore, the cluster contains a dense core, with half of its 500,000 stars contained within an 11 light-year radius of its core.
For comparison, only a dozen stars reside within 11 light-years of our sun. M3 is also notable for the unusually high number of variable
stars, which have been used to calculate the distance to the cluster.
Visually through a telescope, the dense central concentration stars of M3 obscures resolution of the core. M3, truly, hides its heart from us.
The image above was obtained with an ST10XME camera, with an AP 0.67x reducer, through a 12" Meade LX200R telescope. I
combined exposures of 25 minutes of red, and 20 minutes each of blue and green.
Music: You've got to hide your love away, by the Beatles