Galaxies & Star Clusters - Barry Wilson
Messier 51 The Whirpool Galaxy

Messier 51 The Whirpool Galaxy

The Whirlpool Galaxy, also known as Messier 51a, M51a, and NGC 5194, is an interacting grand-design spiral galaxy with a Seyfert 2 active galactic nucleus. It lies in the constellation Canes Venatici, and was the first galaxy to be classified as a spiral galaxy. Its distance is estimated to be between 15 and 35 million light-years (Wikipedia).

M51 is a beautiful gem of an interacting galaxy, grabbed while the UK finally started to warm up and my garden burst into Spring. We've returned to cloud for the time being however this image will form a good base for whatever I may be able to capture over the coming weeks. I am partially glad about the returning cloud - my AAG CloudWatcher's rain sensor broke (I'm blaming the snow) and is back with Lunatico for repair (being posted to me today), so I had anxious through the night wake-ups to check for showers etc and am now pretty knackered. Brought back plenty of memories of setting-up and tearing down, nodding off in the garden in my camping chair wrapped in blankets etc. A hefty crop is below.

William Optics 132FLT at F7 with original TMB flattener 10 Micron GM1000HPS QSI683wsg-8 with Astrodon filters Lum 21 x 600s; 56 x 600s RGB; 9 x 1200s Ha (5nm); total integration 15.8 hours. Totnes. April 2018.