Mount: iOptron CEM60

Triangulum Galaxy

The Triangulum Galaxy is a spiral galaxy approximately 3 million light-years (ly) from Earth in the constellation Triangulum. It is catalogued as Messier33 or NGC598. The Triangulum Galaxy is the third-largest member of the Local Group of galaxies, behind the Milky Way and the Andromeda Galaxy. It is one of the most distant permanent objects that can be viewed with the naked eye. The galaxy is the smallest spiral galaxy in the Local Group and it is believed to be a satellite of the Andromeda Galaxy due to their interactions, velocities, and proximity to one another in the night...

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Leo Triplet

The Leo Triplet, or the M66 Group, is a group of interacting spiral galaxies located in the northern constellation Leo. The group consists of the galaxies Messier 65, Messier 66 and NGC 3628, also known as the Hamburger Galaxy. The Leo Triplet lies at an approximate distance of 35 million light years from Earth. The three large spiral galaxies can be seen in a single field of view and are well viewed even in small telescopes. Their galactic disks are tilted at different angles when seen from Earth. NGC 3628 appears edge-on, while M65 and M66 are inclined enough...

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Christmas Tree

Christmas tree is actually a nickname for NGC 2264 that officially identifies two astronomical objects: The Cone Nebula and the Christmas Tree Cluster. Unofficially other objects within this designation are: The Snowflake Cluster and the Fox Fur Nebula. No doubt something including a form of cone, Christmas and snowflakes is called a Christmas Tree by fellow astronomers and astro-photographers, who lack no imagination. All these nebulae and star clusters are located in the constellation Monoceros. For reference the Snowflake Cluster in the middle is 2700 light-years away from the Earth – not too much, but due to this region’s...

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M31, Andromeda Galaxy

The Andromeda Galaxy , also known as Messier 31, M31, or NGC 224, is a spiral galaxy approximately 780 kiloparsecs (2.5 million light-years) from Earth, and the nearest major galaxy to the Milky Way. Its name stems from the area of the sky in which it appears, the constellation of Andromeda. The Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies are expected to collide in ~4.5 billion years, merging to form a giant elliptical galaxy or a large disc galaxy. With an apparent magnitude of 3.4, the Andromeda Galaxy is among the brightest of the Messier objects – making it visible to...

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California Nebula

The California Nebula (NGC 1499) is an emission nebula located in the constellation Perseus. Drifting through the Orion Arm of the spiral Milky Way Galaxy, this cosmic cloud by chance echoes the outline of California on the west coast of the United States. Our own Sun also lies within the Milky Way’s Orion Arm, only about 1,500 light-years from the California Nebula. Also known as NGC 1499, the classic emission nebula is around 100 light-years long. It glows with the red light characteristic of hydrogen atoms recombining with long lost electrons, stripped away (ionized) by energetic starlight. Because of...

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