M61 = NGC4303 ( 12h 21.9m +4°28´, 9.7 mag. )
This spiral galaxy in Virgo was discovered by Oriani in May 1779 and Messier observed it on May 11 the same year. At 100,000 ly across, this is one of larger galaxies in Virgo Cluster. Its light takes 55 million years to reach us. Look for it about 50' S of 17 Virginis (see finder chart below).
The above image was taken on May 28, 1998 from Sooke, BC. Cookbook 245 LDC CCD camera was used on Celestron Ultima 8 f6.3 telescope autoguided with Cookbook 211 LDC CCD camera on piggybacked 500mm f8 telephoto lens. Five white integrations (240 sec. each) were processed with AIP4WIN.
North is to the right.
Map created in Guide 7.0 - 2° x 3°. North is up.
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© Jan Wisniewski