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M 108 & NGC 404
Athena Stone & Zach Bowers

Helix Nebula NGC 404
M 108- Athena Stone NGC 404- Zach Bowers

Pictured above are two different galaxies, a Spiral galaxy, M 108, and a Lenticular galaxay, NGC 404. The definition of a galaxy by Webster dictionary is a large, self-contained mass of stars. A spiral galaxy has large concentrations of gas and stars in its arms. A lenticular galaxy is a type of galaxy which is much like a spiral galaxy in shape just missing the arms.

M 108 is an isolated barred spiral galaxy residing within the Ursa Major cluster of galaxies in the Virgo supercluster. For a spiral galaxy it is nearly on edge or appears to be flatter than most. There appears to be no bulge and a poorly-pronounced core. This object is about 45 million light years away from Earth.

NGC 404 is a lenticular galaxy shown in the bottom left of the picture. It is composed of a few young stars, but mainly formed by red giants. Red giants dominate the disk, while the bulge of the galaxy is populated by both red giants and AGB stars. This galaxy was discovered in 1784 by William Herschel. Its nearest galaxy is 1.1 Mpc (3.6 million light-years) away. 

Both M 108 and NGC 404 are both galaxies, and therefore share some similarities. Both are isolated members of their respective galaxies. Both contain amounts of hydrogen, which produces the observable structures that can be seen. M 108 and NGC 404 are both spiral galaxies, but manifested differently.

Due to the distance of NGC 404 and the fact that there is a 2nd magnitude star 7 arc minutes away from it, makes it very hard to see and spot out differences. One can tell the color is much more yellow than that of M 108 due to the fact that it is an older galaxy and therefore produces more yellow light than the younger M 108. M108 produces more of a reddish glow. M 108 is a barred spiral galaxy on its edge, while NGC 404 is a spheroidal galaxy.


"Mirach's Ghost (NGC 404)." Mirach's Ghost (NGC 404). N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2015.

DeGraaff, Regina Barber; Blakeslee, John P.; Meurer, Gerhardt R.; Putman, Mary E. (December 2007). "A Galaxy in Transition: Structure, Globular Clusters, and Distance of the Star-Forming S0 Galaxy NGC 1533 in Dorado". The Astrophysical Journal 671 (2): 1624–1639. Bibcode:2007ApJ...671.1624Ddoi:10.1086/523640.

Frommert, Hartmut. "NGC 7293." Students for the Exploration and Development of Space. <>

Bennett, J. (2010). The cosmic perspective fundamentals. San Francisco,, CA: Pearson Addison-Wesley.

Messier 108. (n.d.). Retrieved December 2, 2015, from

Object M 108 NGC 404
Right Ascension (J2000) 11:11:31 01:09:26.9
Declination (J2000) 55:40:27 +35:43:06
Filters used B (Blue), C (Clear), R (Red), V (Green) B (Blue), C (Clear), R (Red), V (Green)
Exposure time per filter C and B, 300s. V, 200s. R, 390 C and B (300s), R (90s), V (120s
Image dimension 8'7x2'2 631x349 pixels; 13.75x7.6 arcminutes
Date/time observed September 29, 2015 03:58:05 September 29, 2015 03:58:05



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