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M64 - Black Eye Galaxy

Technical card

Resolution: 1920x1080

Dates: May 17, 2017

Frames:
Blue: 22x60" (gain: 139.00) -18C bin 1x1
Green: 22x60" (gain: 139.00) -18C bin 1x1
Luminance: 60x60" (gain: 139.00) -18C bin 1x1
Red: 22x60" (gain: 139.00) -18C bin 1x1

Integration: 2.1 hours

Avg. Moon age: 20.25 days

Avg. Moon phase: 69.67%

Astrometry.net job: 1582235

RA center: 194.182 degrees

DEC center: 21.683 degrees

Pixel scale: 1.064 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: -3.623 degrees

Field radius: 0.325 degrees

Locations: Home, Onalaska, Texas, United States

Description

This beautiful spiral galaxy is about 17 million light-years distant in the northern constellation Coma Berenices. This galaxy has an impressive dust lane which appears strongly on the bottom side of the core, yet it looks like it is also present but obscured by stars on the upper side. The indistinct outer arms extend for a very large distance, about 65,000 light-years in diameter, whereas the well defined inner dust lane extends for only about a quarter of that. Recent observations have shown that M64 is actually composed of two concentric, counter-rotating systems. While all the stars in M64 rotate in the same direction as the interstellar gas in the galaxy's central region, gas in the outer regions rotates in the opposite direction. The unique dusty eye and bizarre rotation are likely the result of a long ago collision and merger of two different galaxies.

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Author

Gary Imm
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M64 - Black Eye Galaxy, Gary Imm

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