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M 66



M66: Asymmetric spiral galaxy in Leo

RA= 11 hr 20 min; Dec = +12 deg 59 min

Date & Site:

Imaged on 1/13/18; Little Blair Valley, Anza Borrego Desert, CA

Conditions: temps in the mid 30's; calm; average seeing but poor transparency.


Telescope: DSI RC10c 1867 mm at f/7

Guider: Internal SBIG guide chip

Mount: AP1100 CP3GOTO
Camera: ST-10XME; CFW10; Astrodon LRGB Gen II filters


Exposures: 100 minutes of Lum (10 min subs) and 40 min each of RGB (5 min subs) for a total of 3 hrs 30 min (could use more subs).

M66 is part of the Leo Triplet (with M65 and NGC 3628). The asymmetry of it's spiral arms and off-center nucleus are likely caused by gravitational pull from nearby M65 and NGC 3628. The galactic arms show clouds of interstellar neutral atomic hydrogen, from regions of newer star formation.

(image reduced to 64% of original size)

36 million light years away

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