Photo of the Week for May 18, 2018
Galaxy season is in full swing, and observers fortunate enough to be able to combine big scopes with dark skies are busy plumbing the depths of the cosmos. But some galaxies stand up reasonably well even in smaller instruments used in conditions that are less than ideal. The lovely specimen pictured above is one such example. Informally known as the Needle Galaxy, NGC4565 glows at magnitude 9.5 in Coma Berenices. The Needle’s edge-on orientation concentrates the object’s light into a narrow streak with a luminous central bulge. This allows NGC4565 to stand out against the background sky glow better than a similar face-on galaxy would.
This impressive portrait of the Needle was captured by Roger Ménard from his backyard observatory in Sainte-Sophie, Quebec. For the final image he combined 42, 4-minute exposures captured with a ZWO ASI 1600MM cooled CMOS camera fitted to a Celestron Edge HD 14 telescope working at f/7.7 (with focal reducer).