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Astronomical Observatory: Cool Images

Astr111 Photography Projects, Fall 2005

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M110, Brett Christians


M110 is a galaxy discovered by Charles Messier in 1773. A galaxy is a large group of stars or interstellar matter that can appear in a variety of flavors including Spiral, lenticular, and irregular. Galaxies are usually separated by millions of light years, and can contain many types of celestial bodies. Earth is a part of the "Milky Way" galaxy. M110 is an elliptical satellite galaxy that orbits the much larger Andromeda Galaxy. The Andromeda Galaxy is located roughly 2-3 million light years away from the Milky Way. Galaxies don't exist as "isolated universes" in space, but instead form groups or clusters that exert gravitational influences on each other. M110 is located within a cluster of galaxies called the Local Group. The Local Group contains 3 large galaxies and over 30 small galaxies.

The M110 galaxy is centered in this image. The galaxy is clearly elliptical. Matter from the Andromeda galaxy is also visible in the lower right hand corner. This trail of matter shows that M110's gravitational force may be pulling at objects within Andromeda. Some smudging patterns are also visible within M110. This smudging indicates the presence of dust lanes with the galaxy. Elliptical galaxies typically don't contain dust, this material may have been taken from the neighboring Andromeda galaxy. A bright, dense, core is visible within the M110 galaxy. This is an indicator of the large celestial body that the galaxy's contents orbit around. M110 has a linear height of approximately 11,000 light years, and a width of 7,000 light years.



Right Ascension (J2000) 00:40:42
Declination (J2000) +41:43:12
Filters used clear(C)
Exposure time per filter 10x120 seconds in C
Date observed

October 06, 2005 (C)





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