Photo of the Week for May 24, 2019
Catalogued as M51, the famed Whirlpool Galaxy is located in the unremarkable constellation Canes Venatici, though most observers associate it with the Big Dipper since the galaxy is found just below Alkaid, the last star in the Dipper’s handle. It’s the object’s visual appearance through a 12-inch or larger telescope that gives rise to its unofficial name, the Whirlpool Galaxy. M51 can be seen from Canadian latitudes all year round, but it’s positioned directly overhead on late-spring evenings.
This exquisite Whirlpool portrait was captured by Sainte-Anne de Kent, New Brunswick, imager Emile Cormier. He recorded 2½ hours of exposure data shot through LRGB filters with a ZWO ASI1600MM imaging camera and Astro-Tech AT8RC 8-inch f/8 Ritchey-Chrétien astrographic telescope for the image.