Spiral Galaxy in Coma Berenices

Uploaded 4/25/02

M64 is also know as the Black Eye Galaxy because of its unusual and stunning dust lane near the core. It is a brilliant 9.4 magnitude, and spans a huge 10.1 arcminutes in the sky. Classed as an Sb spiral, the unique arc of dust near the core makes what would be a rather dull spiral into something special. M64 is a tightly wound spiral system that is smaller than our Milky Way galaxy. This galaxy is almost a local group object, being a mere 12 million light years distant. While it appears to be superimposed on the Virgo cloud, it is much nearer. The outer hub of this galaxy has a soft blue tint with hints of broad brownish dust lanes. There are a few HII regions near the core.

Instrument:  12.5" f/5 Home made Newtonian
Platform:  Astrophysics 1200 QMD
CCD Camera:  SBIG ST7E w/Enhanced Cooling
Exposure:  LRGB = 60:20:20:36 (RGB Binned 2x2)
Filters:  RGB Tricolor
Location:  Payson, Arizona
Elevation:  5150 ft.
Sky:  Seeing FMHW = 2.0 arcsec, Transparency 8/10
Outside Temperature:  10 C
CCD Temperature:  -25 C
Processing:  Maxim DL, Photoshop, AIP4WIN, PW Pro.




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