M33, the Pinwheel Galaxy

M33, the Pinwheel Galaxy, is a spiral, face-on galaxy. It is about 2.2 million light-years distant. It is a member of the so-called Local Group of galaxies, of which our Milky Way galaxy and the Andromeda Galaxy, M31, are also a members. Burnham's Celestial Handbook says this is one of the easiest galaxies to find with a small telescope, due to its size and brightness. I have not found this to be true; in 3 years I have never been able to find so much as a faint smudge in the sky with either my C5 or with a 10-inch reflecting telescope. However, with the LX200's "go-to" mount I had no trouble pointing my telescope exactly in the direction of M33. It took a 1-hour exposure using the C5 under the city sky to get this image. This image covers about 3/4 of that shown by some famous photos of the galaxy. Future project: assemble a mosaic of the entire galaxy.

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