NGC 346

NGC 346 is an open cluster with associated nebula located in the Small Magellanic Cloud that appears in the constellation Tucana. It contains HD 5980, the brightest star in the SMC.

NGC 346, the brightest star-forming region in the neighbouring Small Magellanic Cloud galaxy, some 210 000 light-years away from Earth. The light, wind and heat given off by massive stars have dispersed the glowing gas within and around this star cluster, forming a surrounding wispy nebular structure that looks like a cobweb. Credit: ESO
NGC 346
Hubble Space Telescope image of NGC 346
Observation data (J2000 epoch)
Right ascension 00h 59m 18s[1]
Declination−72° 10 48[1]
Distance210,000 light-years[2]
Physical characteristics
Other designationsESO 51-10,[1] N66
See also: Open cluster, List of open clusters


  1. "NGC 346". SIMBAD. Centre de données astronomiques de Strasbourg. Retrieved 2007-04-17.
  2. APOD, "Young Stars of NGC 346" Archived 2010-08-03 at the Wayback Machine, 2008 September 28 (accessed 12-12-2009)