Credits: ESA / Hubble & NASA
M68 is a globular star cluster located in Hydra, the largest constellation in the sky.
The cluster has an apparent magnitude of 9.67 and lies at a distance of 33,600 light years from Earth. It has the designation NGC 4590 in the New General Catalogue.
In binoculars, the cluster appears as a faint patch of light and one needs at least a 4-inch telescope to resolve the brightest stars.
6-inch instruments resolve the cluster’s outer regions and halo, which has an apparent diameter of 12 arc minutes. Large telescopes resolve stars throughout the cluster, including the core.
Facts about M68 by Keith Turnecliff
The best time of year to observe the cluster from southern latitudes is during the spring. It stays very low above the southern horizon for northern observers and is not an easy target.