M33, AlBroxton




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The Triangulum Galaxy is a spiral galaxy approximately 3 million light years (ly) from Earth in the constellation Triangulum. It is catalogued as Messier 33 or NGC 598, and is sometimes informally referred to as the Pinwheel Galaxy, a nickname it shares with Messier 101. The Triangulum Galaxy is the third-largest member of the Local Group of galaxies, which includes the Milky Way Galaxy, the Andromeda Galaxy and about 30 other smaller galaxies. It is one of the most distant permanent objects that can be viewed with the naked eye. At some 3 million light years away from Earth, the Triangulum Galaxy is the third largest galaxy in our Local Group and it may be a gravitationally bound companion of the Andromeda Galaxy. Its beautiful spiral arms show multitudes of red HII regions and blue clouds of young stars. The largest of these HII regions (NGC 604) spans nearly 1500 across and is the largest so far known. It has a spectrum similar to the Orion Nebula – our own Milky Way’s most celebrated star birth region. “M33 is a gigantic laboratory where you can watch dust being created in novae and supernovae, being distributed in the winds of giant stars, and being reborn in new stars

Observation Notes : Very bright, pretty large, elongated 2 X 1 in PA 0, much brighter in the middle at 100X. M-33 is naked eye on the best of nights and obvious in the 10 X 50 binoculars. At 165X in the 13" there are several HII regions with dot the curving arms, including NGC 604 to the north of the nucleus. On a night I rated 8/10 at 5000 ft. elevation this beautiful spiral really showed off at 135X, the background glow of M-33 sparkles with mottling and the gorgeous arms winding about the compact core make an "S" shape that is unmistakable. Discovered before 1654 by Giovanni Battista Hodierna.



  • M33, AlBroxton
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    M33, AlBroxton


M33, AlBroxton

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Allen Broxton