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Astr110 Photography Projects, Fall 2006

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Messier 74, Andrew Perez


M74 is a large, Spiral galaxy found in the constellation Pisces. Spiral and Elliptical galaxies most likely form through the dissipationless merger of smaller spiral or elliptical galaxies. Pierre Mechain found M74 at the end of September 1780. He reported his discovery to his friend, Charles Messier, who determined its position and included it in his catalog on October 18, 1780. It has a magnitude of 9.19 and the best time to see it is when it is transiting at 1:29am at an altitude of 70 degrees.

M74 has an angular size of 660" and therefore has an therefore has a linear size of 110 thousand lights years. In this photo we see that all of the arms or spirals radiate out from a central location creating the appearance of rotation, much like that of a hurricane.


SEDS <Arizona University >.

Fix, John D. Astronomy: journey to the cosmic frontier. 4th ed. New York: Mcgraw-Hill, 2006.


Right Ascension (J2000) 01:36:42
Declination (J2000) 15:47:00
Filters used Clear (C)
Exposure time per filter 4 Exposures at 300 Seconds
Date observed

October 19, 2006 (C)