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NGC 6946 - The Fireworks Galaxy

Contains: NGC 6946

Technical card

Imaging telescope or lens: Planewave CDK 12,5'' 12.5 CDK

Mount: apt1200gto AP1200

Guiding camera: QSI 583wsg

Software: CCD Autopilot 5

Resolution: 1200x896

Dates: Oct. 2, 2010

Frames: 28x600"

Integration: 4.7 hours

Avg. Moon age: 23.02 days

Avg. Moon phase: 40.72%

Astrometry.net job: 1511787

RA center: 308.715 degrees

DEC center: 60.156 degrees

Pixel scale: 1.197 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: -179.933 degrees

Field radius: 0.249 degrees

Description

Also known as the "Fireworks Galaxy", NGC 6946 is a face-on spiral galaxy in the constellation of Cygnus. Lying almost in the plane of our own galaxy, it is highly obscured with nearby interstellar material making it difficult to photograph clearly. The bluish patch to the right of the galaxy's center is a peculiar cluster of bright, young star clusters almost 2000 light years in diameter that were not documented until 1967. This relatively recent discovery of such an object that is obvious in modern amateur astrophotography may be a good indicator of the strides made in the last decade in off-the-shelf CCD cameras and telescopes.

NGC6946 lies at a distance of 22 million light years.

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Author

Hap Griffin
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NGC 6946 - The Fireworks Galaxy, Hap Griffin