Since globular clusters orbit the center of the galaxy like everything else in it, the vast majority of them are found in the hemisphere containing the galactic core. Messier 68 is an oddity, a large globular cluster found in the hemisphere opposite the galactic center. Physically, it is about 106 light-years in diameter, and appears about 11.0 arc-minutes across on the sky (about a third of the width of the full Moon). It is located at the not-too-shabby distance of 33,300 light-years from us, and given that it is further from the core than we are, it is perhaps not too surprising that it is approaching us at 112 kilometers/second. M68 contains a fairly average number of 42 variable stars (discovered so far).
|Messier 68 in Hydra.|