NGC 7789 is an open cluster in Cassiopeia that was discovered by astronomer and comet-hunter Caroline Herschel in 1783. It has become known as The White Rose Cluster or Caroline’s Rose Cluster because, when seen visually, the loops of stars and dark lanes look like the swirling pattern of rose petals as seen from above.
Caroline’s brother William Herschel included the cluster in his catalog as H VI.30.
Caroline’s Rose is one of many star clusters: groups of stars gravitationally bound that appear in a group against the blackness of space.
Caroline’s Rose is an example of an open star cluster. Unlike globular clusters, which are ancient objects, open star clusters are groups of up to a few thousand younger stars that are loosely bound together by gravity.
Perhaps the most famous open star cluster is the Pleiades, M45, one of the most easily recognisable targets in the night sky.
Caroline’s Rose is about 8,000 lightyears away and is a much older open star cluster, potentially about 1.6 billion years old.
Below is a selection of images of NGC 7789 captured by astrophotographers and BBC Sky at Night Magazine readers.