The M81 Galaxy Group

Click here for 50% full size version.
Click here for full size version.

Anacortes Telescope & Wild Bird Astronomy Picture of the Day
February 8, 2005

Image Data: Object Information:
  • Exposure:  Clear
    • Mosaic of 6 frames
    • All exposures binned 1x1
    • Each frame is 10x300s
  • Telescope:  Stellarvue SV80S @ f/4.77
  • Mount:  MI-250 GoTo
  • Camera:  SBIG ST-2000XM CCD, SBIG CFW-8
  • Location:  My backyard in Goleta, CA
  • Date/Time: 
    • January 11/12, 2005,  23:28-05:57 PST
  • Processing:  Taken  in CCDSoft v5 using CCDCommander 100% UNATTENDED while I slept!  Reduced in CCDSoft.  Aligned sub-frames with RegiStar.  Combined sub-exposures with Ray Gralak's Sigma Clip.  Aligned mosaic with RegiStar.  DDP with custom software.  Mosaic assembled, curves, and levels in Photoshop.
  • Name:  Most of The M81 Galaxy Group, M81, M82, NGC3077, NGC2976, IC2574, plus many more.
  • Type:  Galaxy Group
  • Constellation:  Ursa Major
  • Distance: about 12 million light-years

  • This galaxy group is the nearest group of galaxies to our own.  Our group of galaxies includes the Andromeda galaxy, among others.  M81, the largest galaxy in this group, is wrecking havoc with the other galaxies in this region.  M82, the second largest is undergoing massive new star birth due to interactions with M81.  In the far left side of the image, IC2574 has been stretched out into a strange shape.
  • More information on the M81 Group can be found here.
  • A very cool radio image can be seen here.  This shows some of the tidal interactions between the galaxies.
Back          Home