Andromeda Galaxy

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The Andromeda Galaxy is approaching the Milky Way at about 110 kilometres per second (68 mi/s). We measure it approaching relative to our sun at around 300 kilometres per second (190 mi/s) as the sun orbits around the center of our galaxy at a speed of approximately 225 kilometres per second (140 mi/s). This makes Andromeda one of the few blueshifted galaxies that we observe. Andromeda’s tangential or side-ways velocity with respect to the Milky Way is relatively much smaller than the approaching velocity and therefore we expect it to directly collide with the Milky Way in about 4 billion years. A likely outcome of the collision is that the galaxies will merge to form a giant elliptical galaxy.  Such events are frequent among the galaxies in galaxy groups. The fate of the Earth and the Solar System in the event of a collision is currently unknown. Before the galaxies merge, there is a small chance that the Solar System could be ejected from the Milky Way or join M31.

Imaging telescopes or lenses: Orion 8″ f/3.9 Newtonian Astrograph
Imaging cameras: Canon T3i
Mounts: Celestron AVX
Focal reducers: Baader MPCC
Software: PixInsight
Filters: Orion SkyGlow 2″ Imaging Filter
Dates: Nov. 30, 2013
Frames: 20×360″
Integration: 2.0 hours

Author: Charles Ward
AstroPhotography of the day by SPONLI 02 June 2014