NGC4631 The Whale Galaxy

4th March 2006
Object name: NGC4631 The Whale Galaxy
Object type: Galaxy
Magnitude: 9.7
Size: 15.2 2.8
Position angle: 8
Classification: SBcd
Apparent RA: 12 42 07.6 Apparent Dec: +32 32 30
Constellation: Canes Venatici

This particular evening was not going too well. The dec guiding had gone a bit weird and it was difficult to keep the stars a reasonable shape. This was a bunch of frames a shot as the evening was getting on and I was getting a bit fed up. In the end I was quite happy with the detail the stack produced.

NGC 4631 is sometimes known as the Whale Galaxy and lives near the equally disturbed NGC 4656 known as the Hockey Stick galaxy. These two probably had a little contretemps at some point in the past that caused all the disruption.

This could perhaps benefit from more frames and better processing - the dim outer regions of the galaxy have gone a bit noisy, but overall I consider this image a bonus as I didn't think I was going to get a result. It might even get itself some colour at some point in the future.

This image was autoguided using my 400mm focal length refractor and my black and white SC1 webcam.

Captured in Artemis Capture. Individual L subs calibrated, aligned and combined in Maxim. DDP applied to long L layer. Some sharpening in maxim and star desaturation in photoshop.

Exposure Details :

8x330s on 200mm @ F5 with ART285

Curdridge Observatory, Southampton,UK