Tag: M83

M83 Southern Pinwheel Galaxy

Messier 83, sometimes called Southern Pinwheel Galaxy is one of the most difficult deep space objects in the whole of Messier’s catalog. It is located between the constellations Hydra and Centaurus. This galaxy has a very low southern declination (close to the horizon) and this makes it difficult to photograph in Central Europe. I tried a few years ago in La Palma, but my attempt was ruined by clouds and bad weather in general. This time I was better prepared: traveled south and hired a telescope with a much longer focal length. However, after the acquisition in the post-processing stage, I noticed that the final image is not that sharp and it was not really publishable. I was quite disappointed and put the picture in the archive. Recently I came back to this image because a new tool for sharpening was released – BlurXTerminator. I must say, this plugin for Pixinsight makes magical things. It reduces the stars and simultaneously makes the non-stellar object significantly sharper. I managed to turn an unfocused picture into this:

TelescopeMeade 10″
Aperture254 mm
Focal length2097 mm
MountMK 100K
AutoguidingMGEN 240 mm
CameraZWO 071 @-10°C
CorrectorTS 0.67 reducer
Exposure52x180s, Gain 95, bin 1×1,

M83 Southern Pinwheel Galaxy

Messier 83 is a spiral galaxy located in constellation Hydra. It is one of the brightest and closest (15 million light-years) galaxies observable from Earth. On the other hand there are much brighter and closer galaxies, for example Andromeda is only 2.5 million light-years away and M33 Triangulum Galaxy is roughly 3 million light-years away.

Due to the fact that the M83 has very low southern declination (rises not far from horizon), thus it is very difficult to capture from light polluted Central Europe, I decided to take a trip to south. Specifically to La Palma (Canary Islands) and tried to photograph it from there. I had only one clear night out of ten, but together with M68 was this galaxy my primary target and I somehow managed. My plan was to capture more deep space objects, but the weather didn’t allow me.

Technical details:

TelescopeNewton 150/600 mm
Aperture150 mm
Focal length630 mm
MountAvalon M-Zero
AutoguidingZWO 174MM, Guidescope 30 mm
CameraZWO 071 Pro @-10°C
CorrectorExplore Scientific HR
FiltersAstronomik L-1 - UV IR Block Filter
Exposure87x300s, Gain 94, bin 1x1,