The Seven Sisters and a close up of Merope
the Pleiades or Seven Sisters (Messier 45 - M45), is an open star cluster containing middle-aged hot B-type stars located in the constellation of Taurus. It is among the nearest star clusters to Earth and is the cluster most obvious to the naked eye in the night sky. The celestial entity has several meanings in different cultures and traditions.
The cluster is dominated by hot blue and extremely luminous stars that have formed within the last 100 million years. Dust that forms a faint reflection nebulosity around the brightest stars was thought at first to be left over from the formation of the cluster (hence the alternate name Maia Nebula after the star Maia), but is now known to be an unrelated dust cloud in the interstellar medium, through which the stars are currently passing. Computer simulations have shown that the Pleiades was probably formed from a compact configuration that resembled the Orion Nebula. Astronomers estimate that the cluster will survive for about another 250 million years, after which it will disperse due to gravitational interactions with its galactic neighborhood.
The bottom image is a close up of the star Merope. She is one of the seven Pleiades, daughters of Atlas and Pleione. Pleione, their mother, is the daughter of Oceanus and Tethys and is the protector of sailors.Their transformation into the star cluster known as the Pleiades is the subject of varied myths.
Credits: NASA/ESA/AURA/Cal-Tech/Bob Gillette
Dioptase // Namibia
A section of the Carina Nebula in the constellation Carina
Image credit: NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope