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Contains:  NGC 4656, NGC 4631, NGC 4627
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NGC 4631: The Whale Galaxy and its Crowbar Neighbor, 


            Randal Healey
NGC 4631: The Whale Galaxy and its Crowbar Neighbor

NGC 4631: The Whale Galaxy and its Crowbar Neighbor

Technical card

Resolution: 3117x2159

Dates:June 1, 2018

Astrodon BLUE 36mm - Gen2 E-Series Tru-Balance: 17x300" -20C bin 1x1
Astrodon GREEN 36mm - Gen2 E-Series Tru-Balance: 15x300" -20C bin 1x1
Astrodon LUM 36mm - Gen2 E -Series Tru-Balance: 21x600" -20C bin 1x1
Astrodon RED 36mm - Gen2 E-Series Tru-Balance: 16x300" -20C bin 1x1

Integration: 7.5 hours

Darks: ~50

Flats: ~30

Bias: ~75

Avg. Moon age: 17.41 days

Avg. Moon phase: 92.29%

Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 3.75 job: 2090855

RA center: 190.683 degrees

DEC center: 32.478 degrees

Pixel scale: 2.221 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: 358.215 degrees

Field radius: 1.169 degrees

Locations: Healey "Utahopia" Observatory, Kaysville, Utah, United States

Data source: Backyard


NGC 4631 is a big beautiful spiral galaxy. Seen edge-on, it lies only 25 million light-years away in the northern constellation Canes Venatici. The galaxy's slightly distorted wedge shape suggests to some a cosmic herring and to others its popular moniker, The Whale Galaxy. Either way, it is similar in size to our own Milky Way. In this sharp color image, the galaxy's yellowish core, dark dust clouds, bright blue star clusters, and red star forming regions are easy to spot. A companion galaxy, the small elliptical NGC 4627 is just above the Whale Galaxy. Faint star streams seen in deep images are the remnants of small companion galaxies disrupted by repeated encounters with the Whale in the distant past. The Whale Galaxy is also known to have spouted a halo of hot gas glowing in X-rays.



Randal Healey
License: None (All rights reserved)

Sky plot

Sky plot


NGC 4631: The Whale Galaxy and its Crowbar Neighbor, 


            Randal Healey