Whirlpool Galaxy

98. Whirlpool Galaxy


Messier 51  RA: 13h 29.9'  Dec: +47 12'   Canes Venatici (CVn)

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The Whirlpool Galaxy, also known as Messier 51a, M51a, and NGC 5194, is an interacting grand-design spiral galaxy with a Seyfert 2 active galactic nucleus. It lies in the constellation Canes Venatici, and was the first galaxy to be classified as a spiral galaxy. Its distance is estimated to be 31 million light-years away from Earth.The galaxy and its companion, NGC 5195, are easily observed by amateur astronomers, and the two galaxies may be seen with binoculars. The Whirlpool Galaxy has been extensively observed by professional astronomers, who study it to understand galaxy structure (particularly structure associated with the spiral arms) and galaxy interactions.



 

Image Information

Location Fingal ON
Date Apr 29 2008
Optics Celestron C8
Filters None
Mount Celestron CGE
Camera Canon Rebel XT
ISO 800
Subexposures 10
Exposure Length 300
Guider SBIG ST-4/Stellarvue NH2
 

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All images copyright © 2006-2021, Rick Saunders
Main text descriptions sourced from Wikipaedia.
Sky position information is based on IP geolocation and is therefore approximate.