Northern Panorama

M51 Whirlpool Galaxy

Common name: Messier 51, Whirlpool Galaxy
Constellation: Canes Venatici
Right ascension: 13h 29m 52.7s
Declination: +47° 11′ 43″
Distance: 31 Mly
Apparent magnitude: 8.4
Size: 76 000 light-years in diameter

The Whirlpool Galaxy M51


The Whirlpool Galaxy, Messier 51, is a beautiful target in the constellation Canes Venatici. It’s a grand-design spiral galaxy with an active nucleus. The Whirlpool galaxy interacts with its companion NGC 5195.
With its rather small size, it’s recommendable to use a focal lenght of at least 1000 mm. I took this image with the Sky-Watcher 190 Maksutov-Newton and the ZWO ASI 1600MM. I shot from a bottle 2 location near the Arctic Circle in Swedish Lapland and the total integration was 3 hours 30 min (2 hour Luminance, 1,5 hour RGB).