M106 - A Seyfert Galaxy in Canes Venatici
M106 - A Seyfert Galaxy in Canes Venatici
M106 - A Seyfert Galaxy in Canes Venatici
M106 is an X-Ray emitting Seyfert galaxy about 25 million light years from us. Most likely, the x-ray emissions are telling us that part of this galaxy is collapsing into a black hole. This possible supermassive black hole is believed to be as large as 36 million solar masses!

This image also shows over 30 identifiable background galaxies including the fairly large galaxy, NGC 4248 at about 2 o'clock, as well as NGC 4231 and 4232 to the upper right of NGC 4248.

In this photo, North is up. This image is cropped to 68% of the original full frame.

Exposure Details
Lens Celestron C-8 SCT with Celestron focal reducer
Focal Length 1160mm
Focal Ratio f/5.8
Mount Schaefer GEM - 7 1/2 Byers Gear
Guiding ONAG On-Axis Guider with PHD Guiding
Camera Canon 450D - Gary Honis modified
Exposure 286 subexposures of 180 seconds each at ISO 1600 - about 14 1/3 hours total
Calibration 30 darks, 30 flats, 30 bias
Date May 22, 23, and 24, 2012
Temperature 55F on 5/22, 46F on 5/23, 47F on 5/24
SQM Reading 21.1 (Bortle 4), on all 3 nights
Seeing 2 of 5 on 5/22, 3/5 on 5/23 and 5/24
Location Pine Mountain Club, California
Software Used Images Plus 4.5 for camera control, calibration, stacking, digital development, Lucy-Richardson deconvolution, multiresolution sharpening, smoothing and noise reduction. Photoshop CS5 used for levels and curves, color correction, high pass filter, star shrinking, saturation adjustments, lab color, sharpening, and screen mask invert. Gradient Xterminator for gradient removal. Carboni Tools for additional saturation adjustments, noise reduction, and smoothing. HLVG for additional color correction.
Notes This is the second time I've imaged M106, and I feel the time spent on this redux was well spent. I'm very happy with the galaxy details I was able to capture with this image, as M106 has some very nice fine structures. I'm also happy with the final color balance I achieved, as well as the nice details in the outer halo.

This image was published by Astronomy Magazine as its Picture of the Day for March 12, 2018!

If you liked this picture, you might also want to view: