Loops in M63

Loops in M63

Sunflower Galaxy, NGC 5055

Constellation: Canes Venatici
Ra: 13h 15m 49s
Dec: +42d 1m 45s
Distance: 37 million light years
Image Size: 36' x 36'
North: Upper right

Enlarge

Description

This galaxy has received considerable notoriety recently due to the discovery of tidal tails, loops of debris, that are markers of an earlier collision or collisions of galaxies. The discovery was made by a collaboration of professionals and amateur astrophotographer, R. Jay Gabany. Click here to see their seminal image. Amateur astrophotographer Tony Hallas also has a deep image showing these tidal tail loops. Thus, the goal here is to determine if these loops can be brought out, since they required dark skies, many hours of exposure and delicate processing methods for signals that are close to background levels. The tidal tails are faint and may require a bright monitor. There is additional galactic dust in the image, as well, along with a multitude of tiny galaxies in the background in this deep image. The "Sunflower" name comes from the yellow, mottled appearance of the core. There are many pinkish HII star-forming regions. M63 is part of the M51 Group, that includes the Whirlpool Galaxy, M51.
Exposure: 12.75 hrs Total - 7.5:1.5:1.75:2 hrs LRGB
Telescope: RCOS 16
Mount: Software Bisque Paramount ME
Oag: Astrodon MonsterMOAG
Acquisition: CCD AutoPilot4
Calibration: CCDStack2
Observatory Site: Sierra-Remote Observatories, Shaver Lake, CA
Camera: Apogee U16M
Filters: Astrodon Gen 2 LRGB
Guider: SBIG ST-402
Camera Operation: MaximDL4.62
Processing: Photoshop CS5 Extended
Image Date: 02/06/2011 - 02/10/2011

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Spam Protection *