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Astr111 Photography Projects, Spring 2007

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M100 Spiral Galaxy, Jennifer Waid

M100 Spiral Galaxy

First discovered on March 15, 1781 by Pierre Méchain, M100 is one of the brightest members of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies. Coinciding with several characteristics of spiral galaxies, the arms have many new forming stars. This is why we see many blue stars in M100's visible arms, which because of their intense heat, gives this photograph a beautiful blue hue. This galaxy's shape has been heavily influenced by the nearby galaxies. It is estimated that the this galaxy is at a distance of 50 to 60 million light years away. The angular size of this object is 4 arc minutes. The diameter is approximately 160,000 light years. And it is also speculated that it has about 160 billion suns.

Within this image we can see three more fainter galaxies around M100. We can see that these are galaxies by a faint fuzziness around a brighter center. We can spot one near the top (which is named NGC4322), to the left of M100, and one near the bottom right hand corner of this photograph. Smaller galaxies are commonly found around larger ones. Several supernovae have also been discovered within M100 itself as well. Amateur telescopes can capture this photogenic galaxy in the right conditions. I used blue, green, red and clear filters so my image could receive its fullest color potential.

References:
Kronberg, Christine And Frommert, Hartmut. "Messier 100." <http://www.seds.org/messier/m/m100.html>.

<http://csep10.phys.utk.edu/astr162/lect/galaxies/spiral.html>

Perkins, Philip. "M100 - Coma Berencies." <http://www.astrocruise.com/m100.htm>.

Right Ascension (J2000) 12:22:55
Declination (J2000) 15:49:23
Filters used blue(B), green(V), red(R), and clear(C)
Exposure time per filter 5x60 seconds in CBVR
Date observed

March 15, 2007 (CB)
March 18, 2007 (VR)