Barred Spiral Galaxy in Ophiuchus

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NGC6384 is a faint (magnituded 10.4) barred-spiral galaxy, visually located in the constellation Ophiuchus, presenting to us 47% inclined from face-on. It is estimated to be approximately 77 million light years from earth, and approximately 135,000 light years in diameter (similar to the size of our Milky Way galaxy, a large galaxy), with a mass a little less than our Milky Way. This galaxy has a small apparent size (about 8 arcminutes/.13 degrees of angular diameter) due to its distance.

In photographing this galaxy, my telescope is looking through a dense part of our own Milky Way galaxy; all those individual stars you can see in this image are foreground stars, in the Milky Way.


Technical Information:

LRGB: 510:165:180:210 (That's almost 18 hours of exposure time; luminance, red and green images were all fifteen minute unbinned images; blue were twenty minute unbinned images).

Equipment: RC Optical Systems 14.5 inch Ritchey-Chretien carbon fiber truss telescope, with ion-milled optics and RCOS field flattener, at about f/9, and an SBIG STX-16803 with internal filter wheel (SBIG filter set), guided by an SBIG AO-X, all riding on a Bisque Paramount ME German Equatorial Mount.

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

Processing: All images calibrated (darks, bias and sky flats), aligned, and combined in Pixinsight. Color combine in Pixinsight. Some finish work (background neutralization, color calibration, gradient removal, deconvolution, HDR multiscale transform, multiscale linear transform) done in Pixinsight; some finish work (Neat Image noise reduction, Smart Sharpening, LRGB combination, contrast and saturation adjustment) was done in Photoshop CC.

Location: Data acquired remotely from Sierra Remote Observatories, Auberry, California, USA.

Date: Images taken on many nights in July and August of 2020. Image posted August 18, 2020.

Date: Image scale of full-resolution image: 0.56 arcseconds per pixel.

Seeing: Generally very good, with calibrated luminance images varying from 1.6 to 2.0 arcsecond FWHM

CCD Chip temperature: -25C

Copyright 2020 Mark de Regt

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