Hemisphere:  Northern  ·  Constellation: Andromeda (And)  ·  Contains:  35 nu. And  ·  Andromeda Galaxy  ·  Andromeda galaxy  ·  M 110  ·  M 31  ·  M 32  ·  M110  ·  M31  ·  M32  ·  NGC 205  ·  NGC 221  ·  NGC 224  ·  NGC206  ·  The star νAnd
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The Andromeda Galaxy, 


            Gabe Shaughnessy
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The Andromeda Galaxy

Getting plate-solving status, please wait...
The Andromeda Galaxy, 


            Gabe Shaughnessy
Powered byPixInsight

The Andromeda Galaxy

Imaging telescopes or lenses: Astro-Physics 92mm F6.65 Stowaway

Imaging cameras: ZWO ASI6200MM Pro

Mounts: Astro-Physics Mach1AP GTO CP4

Guiding telescopes or lenses: Astro-Physics 92mm F6.65 Stowaway

Guiding cameras: ZWO Optical ASI174MM

Focal reducers: Astro-Physics 0.8x CCD Telecompressor (92TCC)

Software: PixInsight  ·  Voyager  ·  Astro-Physics Command Center (APCC) Pro Software  ·  PHD2

Filters: LRGB  ·  Chroma Ha 3nm

Accessory: Pegasus Astro Ultimate Powerbox v2  ·  Starlight Instruments Focuser Boss 2 HSM

Dates:Oct. 10, 2020Nov. 7, 2020

Chroma Ha 3nm: 17x900" (4h 15') bin 1x1
LRGB: 139x300" (11h 35') bin 1x1

Integration: 15h 50'

Avg. Moon age: 21.86 days

Avg. Moon phase: 53.06%

Astrometry.net job: 4018408

RA center: 0h 42' 46"

DEC center: +41° 14' 48"

Pixel scale: 1.571 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: 178.869 degrees

Field radius: 2.281 degrees

Resolution: 8400x6200

Data source: Backyard


The Andromeda Galaxy, M31, is a spiral galaxy nearly 2.5 million light years away in the constellation Andromeda. It is the closest non-satellite galaxy of our host galaxy, the Milky Way, and is nearly twice as massive at 1.5 trillion solar masses. It is visible with the naked eye from moderately dark skies, and is about 6x2 lunar diameters in apparent size.

The Milky Way and M31 are moving towards each other at 225 km/s (504000mph) and are expected to collide in 3-4 billion years. While the odds of stellar collisions are incredibly small due to the large inter-stellar separation, the ambient hydrogen gas will be compressed. The result is a significant increase in stellar formation. For comparison, the Milky Way is estimated to produce roughly 2 stars per year, and galaxy mergers of medium to large size such as this future collision can produce 100-1000 stars per year.

Eventually, the supermassive black holes that reside in the core of our galaxies will inspiral and find each other, resulting in a massive collision. The energy radiated away during such a collision is truly incredible. The first observation of a black hole collision by LIGO determined that the two black holes, of mass 36 and 29 solar masses, radiated a total of 3 solar masses of gravitational energy. This is equivalent to the entire world's energy production expended once a nanosecond for 6 years, and expended again for each and every human on earth. Instead of 6 years though, the black hole merger expended a bulk of this energy in 0.1 seconds. Now, the estimated mass of the Milky Way's black hole is 4.3 million, the Andromeda's mass is 40 million solar masses.