Classic Duo plus One - M81.
M82, and NGC 3077
M81and M82 together form
the most famous galactic pair known, but a third galaxy wants to
crash the party.
on bottom-left, is a nice spiral galaxy
in Ursa Major, the "big bear." Its size, from earth,
is near the equivalent of our full moon; therefore, this is one
of the larger galaxies in the night sky from our vantage point.
Here, the majestic and sweeping spiral
arms show an abundance of hot, star forming regions. M81 is also
known as "Bode's Nebula."
In contrast to M81, M82
(bottom-right) is a peculiar galaxy shown
on edge. Because it is shown on edge it is unclear exactly
what type of galaxy this is. A unique feature of this galaxy
is the red ejecta spraying out of the core which is somewhat captured
here in this image. The ejecta is likely caused
by tidal attractions to the larger M81 neightbor. M82 is sometimes known as the "Cigar
Galaxy" because of its shape.
party crasher is NGC 3077, a magnitude 10, peculiar
galaxy. Like M82, it shows strange structures
and dust clouds that are likely due to gravitational interaction
with other, larger members of the M81 group. It looks much like an elliptical galaxy.
According to Wikipedia, the active nucleus of
Seyfert in 1943 to include it in his list of galaxies, which are now called
Seyfert Galaxies. However, NGC 3077, though an emission line galaxy, is
today no longer classified as a Seyfert galaxy."
these galaxies are
circumpolar for most of the United States, meaning that they rest very near the celestial pole.
Springs Astronomy Campus near Crowell, Texas
to April, 2008
Transparency: 7/10, windy
on second night
Temperature: -20 degrees C on camera
Scope/Mount: Tak TOA-150
(with 67 flattener)
on Paramount ME
Camera: SBIG STL-11000M astro
Exposure Info: LRGB
image; 240:60:60:60 minutes (10 minute subexposures for LRGB)
with CCDSoft. Calibration
(darks/flats), and registration in CCDstack
(median combine). RGB/LRGB
combine, color balance, levels/curves, and
noise removal (Noel Carboni's Astronomy Tools) in Photoshop
Location: The Ballauer Observatory near Azle, Texas
Date: February 16,
2004 (RGB) and April 7, 2004 (Luminance)
Temperature: 60 degrees F
Transparency: 4/10 (dew)
data - Takahashi FSQ-106 @ f/5 and
Celestron CGE mount. Luminance data - Takahashi FSQ-106 @ f/8 and Tak
NJP Temma 2 mount
Camera: SBIG ST-10XME, self-guided
LRGB image - 160:80:80:80 minutes (10 min. subexposures RGB, 20 min. subexposures
Dark frame calibration (no flats), de-blooming (New Astro Plug-in), registration, and Sigma combine
of all channels in MaxIm 3.0. Background compensation, Digital-Development and Lucy-Richardson
Deconvolution (10 iterations) in Images Plus. Final data combine,
curves, levels, and color balance in Photoshop CS.
Extra information: Green
haloes caused by RGB data being shot at smaller focal length than
Luminance. Deblooming still needs some work as well.
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