Spiral Galaxy in Centaurus

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NGC4945: This is a two-panel mosaic (necessary for decent composition of the image) of this relatively nearby galaxy, seen by us nearly edge-on. This perspective highlights the dark dust lanes, and still shows the bright blue areas of young stars, and pinkish areas of active star-formation (there is so much star-formation in this galaxy that it is considered to be a "starburst" galaxy). It is thought that the center of this galaxy contains a supermassive black hole.

With a diameter of perhaps 95,000 light years, this galaxy is almost as large as our own Milky Way galaxy; it is about 13 million light years from us.


Technical Information:

LRGB: First panel: 315:110:150:100; Second panel: 360:180:130:120; Luminance layer is the integration of unbinned 15-minute exposures, while the color channels were the integration of 10-minute exposures, binned 2x2.

Equipment: 14.5" RCOS at about f/9, and an SBIG STL-11000M with internal filter wheel (Astrodon filter set), guided by a MOAG/AO-L combination, all riding on a Bisque Paramount ME German Equatorial Mount.

Image Acquisition/Camera Control: Maxim DL, controlled with ACP, working in concert with TheSky v6.

Processing: All images calibrated (darks and dawn flats), aligned and combined in Pixinsight. Color combine in Pixinsight. Gradient taming, sharpening and noise reduction in Pixinsight. A bit of finish work was done in Photoshop CS5.

Location: Data acquired remotely from Fair Dinkum Skies, Moorook, South Australia.

Date: Images taken on many nights in February and March of 2015. Image posted March 27, 2015.

CCD Chip temperature: -5C

Copyright 2015 Mark de Regt

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