DSLR astrophotography by Sergi Verdugo
M81, M82, NGC3077, NGC2976 and the IFN
Exposure: 55×360″ + 18×90″ + 14×30″ @ ISO 1600
Telescope: William Optics Megrez 88FD with Borg DG-L
Mount: Skywatcher EQ6 Pro
Camera: Amp-off Modded & Cooled Canon 350D
Date: 17th March 2010
Location: Rasos de Peguera (Barcelona)
Comments: I shot this photo on a very cold Wednesday night in March. The observing site at 1850m height was plenty of snow and I was alone… not very pleasant.
M81 is the largest galaxy visible in the image. M81 is gravitationally interacting with M82 just to the left of it, a big galaxy with an unusual halo of filamentary red-glowing gas, and NGC 3077 at the bottom of the image. Around the image many other galaxies from the M81 Group of galaxies can be seen, NGC2976 is at the upper right corner. Together with other galaxy congregates including our Local Group of galaxies and the Virgo Cluster of galaxies, the M81 Group, a group of 34 galaxies located in the constellation Ursa Major, is part of the expansive Virgo Supercluster of Galaxies. In this image these galaxies are viewed through the very faint glow of the Integrated Flux Nebula, a little studied complex of diffuse gas and dust clouds in our Milky Way Galaxy.
M81, also known as Bode’s Galaxy, and M82, also known as Cigar Galaxy, are about 12 million light-years away from the Earth.