Photo of the Week for October 5, 2018
Each season seems to feature one exceptionally popular astrophotography target. For autumn, that target unquestionably is the Andromeda Galaxy, M31. Each year around this time we receive a fresh crop of Andromeda Galaxy images. Presented here 2019’s first entry—and what a beauty it is. In addition to all the usual features we associate with the object— a bright, compact core, riffled dust lanes and prominent satellite galaxies (M32 and M110)—this impressive portrait also displays numerous crimson H II regions dotting the spiral arms. It is one of the finest Andromeda Galaxy shots we’ve seen.
Of course, such outstanding results don’t come without effort. London, Ontario, astrophotographer Ryan Fraser recorded a total of 8 hours exposure through H-alpha, red, green and blue filters, over three nights this past September to create this rendering of M31. He used a ZWO ASI1600 Pro monochromatic astro camera and a Stellarvue 80ED refractor telescope fitted with a William Optics 0.8× field flattener/focal reducer.