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M81, M82 in Ursa Major

 

 

CLICK HERE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION - (2400 x 1599)

Scope: Zenithstar 66 mm APO at f/4.6; Location: Laguna Mountains, CA;  19 April, 2009; Camera: Canon XT 350D (Baader ACF modified)

Exposure: 18 x 5 min  (no filters) ISO 800, 6 Darks, no Flats 

Processing: Images were captured with DSLR Focus  and saved as RAW file format. Images were decoded and dark corrected in IRIS. Images were aligned and stacked in IRIS with Sigma Median.  Dark point equalization and rough color balance  were done in IRIS. Gamma adjustments also done in Iris. Gradient removal was done in IRIS with a pseudo-flat generation. The exposure stack was saved as Tiff.  Final stretching and touch up was done in PhotoShop. Star repair was made in Photoshop on edge stars since they suffered a bit with the wide field optics.  Saturation was increased on the final image since the colors looked somewhat muted.  Final Image size is approximately 3474x2314 - re-sampled to 2400x1599.

North is up in this image.  This image is guided.  This is an image of a region in the constellation of Ursa Major that includes M81, M82, NGC 3077 and NGC 2976 galaxies. M81 is dominant galaxy in the image with M82 just above it. M81 is a grand design spiral galaxy and M82 is an irregular galaxy seen edge on. NGC 3077 is below and to the left of M81 and NGC 2976 is at the lower right edge. All of these galaxies are about 12 million light years distant from Earth.  All of these galaxies are thought to be a grouping called the M81 group.   The Horizontal FOV is about 4 deg, 8 min.

Image Center is approximately - Equatorial 2000: RA: 09h 56m 18.1s Dec: +6922'58"

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