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Contains:  IC2684, IC2694, IC2704, IC2708, IC2745, IC2752, IC2754, IC2761, IC2762, IC2765, IC2769, IC2782, Leo Triplet, M 65, M 66, M65, M66, NGC 3623, NGC 3627, NGC 3628, NGC3628
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Leo Triplet, 


            Michel Makhlouta
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Leo Triplet

Technical card

Dates:March 8, 2019March 9, 2019

ZWO Blue 31mm: 52x60" (gain: 76.00) -20C bin 1x1
ZWO Green 31mm: 60x60" (gain: 76.00) -20C bin 1x1
ZWO Lum 31mm: 172x60" (gain: 0.00) -20C bin 1x1
ZWO RED 31mm: 60x60" (gain: 76.00) -20C bin 1x1

Integration: 5.7 hours

Darks: ~50

Flats: ~50

Bias: ~200

Avg. Moon age: 2.13 days

Avg. Moon phase: 5.25%

Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 5.00 job: 2583661

RA center: 11h 19' 54"

DEC center: +13° 16' 11"

Pixel scale: 1.611 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: -97.692 degrees

Field radius: 1.246 degrees

Resolution: 4444x3358

Locations: Home, Batroun, North, Lebanon

Data source: Backyard


The Leo Triplet (also known as the M66 Group) is a small group of galaxies about 35 million light-years away in the constellation Leo. This galaxy group consists of the spiral galaxies M65, M66, and NGC 3628.

This was one of the three targets I focused on during the weekend, which was around a new moon. I was reluctant at first about imaging such targets with my 80mm refractor instead of my still in retirement 8" newt. It turned out great though, I am really enjoying the wider field of view.

The first night was for Lum only on these targets. I ended up with facing an issue after stacking, with a lot of vertical lines that couldn't be corrected with calibration frames. This was on Gain 0. I changed to `Gain 76 for RGB the next night and it seems that solved the issue. A weird problem that took me a while to figure out, as it happened before and I ended up changing USB cables, ports, power source, calibration frames and then gave up until considering a change of gain. In any case, I managed to fix the master Lum in post processing every few more days of going back and forth.

Clear Skies!



Michel Makhlouta
License: None (All rights reserved)

Sky plot

Sky plot


Leo Triplet, 


            Michel Makhlouta