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M81 and M82


M81 and M82: Galaxies in Ursa Major

RA= 9 hr 55 min; Dec = +69 deg 3 min

Date & Site:

Imaged on 2/16/18; Little Blair Valley, Anza Borrego Desert, CA

Conditions: temps in the low 20's; calm; good seeing.


Telescope: TEC 140 Refractor; 980 mm at f/7

Guider: Hutech OAG-5 with SBIG STi

Mount: AP1100 CP3GOTO
Camera: FLI 6303E; CFW 2-7; Astrodon LRGB Gen II filters


Exposures: 140 minutes of Lum (10 min subs) and 45 min each of RGB (5 min subs) for a total of 4 hrs 55 min.

Located 12 million light years away

This pair of galaxies are members of the M81 group - a group of 34 galaxies in Ursa Major. Tidal forces from the larger M81 (right) likely deformed M82 (left) beginning over 100 million years ago. The interaction accelerated star formation in M82 (also known as the starburst galaxy) at a rate 10x greater than normal galaxies.

FOV = 91.2 x 59.8 arc minutes

Image reduced to 40% of original size. Click here for full image

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