M86 Galaxy Cluster
M86 Galaxy Field
Galaxy Field in Virgo
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M86 Galaxy Cluster: This is a part of the Virgo cluster, a group of over a thousand galaxies gravitationally bound together. The bright galaxy at the center of the image is M86, a magnitude 9 lenticular galaxy estimated to be 60 million light years away from us. Below and to the left of M86 is M84, a magnitude 9 elliptical galaxy at whose center is one of the most massive black holes known. There are literally dozens of catalogued galaxies in this image; a number of them are labelled here.
LRGB: 380:200:200:160; L consisted of nineteen 20-minute unbinned images; R, G and B also consisted of 20-minute unbinned images.
Equipment: AP130, SBIG ST-10XME with CFW8 (Astrodon filter set), on a Bisque Paramount ME German Equatorial Mount.
Image Acquisition/Camera Control: CCDSoft v5, controlled with CCDAutoPilot3, working in concert with TheSky v6.
Processing: All color images calibrated (darks and dawn flats), debloomed, and aligned, statistical rejection performed, and luminance layer deconvolved in CCDStack. Color combine in CCDStack. Finish work (curves and levels, increasing saturation, smart sharpen luminance layer) was done in Photoshop CS2.
Location: Data acquired remotely from the Tejas Observatory, located on the grounds of New Mexico Skies, near Mayhill, NM (elevation 7300 feet).
Date: Images taken from late February to late March of 2007.
Pixel scale: 1.67 arcseconds per pixel.
CCD Chip temperature: Mostly -25C; sometimes -20C
Seeing: Generally good.
Transparency: Generally good.
Moon Phase: I generally imaged around the moon (and the clouds).
Copyright 2007 Mark de Regt