Daily Archives: March 29, 2014

A Milky Way Dawn


Image Credit & Copyright: Babak Tafreshi (TWAN), ESO Ultra HD Expedition

As dawn broke on March 27, the center of the Milky Way Galaxy stood almost directly above the European Southern Observatory’s Paranal Observatory. In the dry, clear sky of Chile’s Atacama desert, our galaxy’s dusty central bulge is flanked by Paranal’s four 8 meter Very Large Telescope units in this astronomical fisheye view. Along the top, Venus is close to the eastern horizon. The brilliant morning star shines very near a waning crescent Moon just at the edge of one of the telescope structures. Despite the bright pairing in the east, the Milky Way dominates the scene though. Cut by dust lanes and charged with clouds of stars and glowing nebulae, the center of our galaxy sprawls across the darker zenith even as the deep blue sky grows brighter and buildings still glint in moonlight.

NASA APOD 29-mar-2014

Triangulum galaxy – M33

The Triangulum Galaxy is a spiral galaxy approximately 3 million light years (ly) from Earth in the constellation Triangulum.

With a diameter of about 50,000 light years, the Triangulum galaxy is the third largest member of the Local Group of galaxies. It may be a gravitationally bound companion of the Andromeda Galaxy. Triangulum may be home to 40 billion stars, compared to 400 billion for the Milky Way, and 1 trillion (1000 billion) stars for Andromeda.

The disk of Triangulum has an estimated mass of (3-6) × 109 solar masses, while the gas component is about 3.2 × 109 solar masses. Thus the combined mass of all baryonic matter in the galaxy may be 1010 solar masses. The contribution of the dark matter component out to a radius of 55 kly (17 kpc) is equivalent to about 5 × 1010 solar masses.

Imaging telescopes or lenses: Takahashi FSQ 106ED
Mounts: Sky-Watcher NQ6
Guiding cameras: Meade DSI I
Software: Photoshop CS5.1, CCDSOFT v5.0, Pixixinsight 1.8
Filters: Baader RGBL, Baader Ha
Dates: Nov. 2, 2013
Frames: 60×600″
Integration: 10.0 hours

Author: Theodore Kavourinos

AstroPhotography of the day by SPONLI

29 March 2014