Markarian Chain – The heart of the Virgo Cluster

Markarian Chain – The Virgo Cluster

I converted my image to B&W & included a negative for ease of seeing the fainter galaxies, with ID’s.

Some are as faint as 18th magnitude, and I did not have time to label them all…but The Virgo Cluster is a cluster of galaxies whose center is 53.8 Million Light years away (16.5 Mpc) away in the constellation Virgo.

Comprising approximately 1300 (and possibly up to 2000) member galaxies, the cluster forms the heart of the larger Virgo Supercluster, of which the Local Group is an outlying member.

Markarian’s Chain is a stretch of galaxies that forms part of the Virgo Cluster. It is called a chain because, when viewed from Earth, the galaxies lie along a smoothly curved line. It was named after the Armenian astrophysicist, B. E. Markarian, who discovered their common motion in the early 1960s.

Member galaxies include M84 (NGC 4374), M86 (NGC 4406), NGC 4477, NGC 4473, NGC 4461, NGC 4458, NGC 4438 and NGC 4435 and many other PGC & IC Galaxies. Sorry but I did not have time to label them all.

It is located at RA 12h 27m and Dec +13° 10′.

At least seven galaxies in the chain appear to move coherently, although others appear to be superposed by chance.

What does M, NGC, IC, & PGC refer to you ask??

M – Messier Object Number
The Messier objects are a set of 110 astronomical objects first listed by French astronomer Charles Messier in 1771. Messier was a comet hunter, and was frustrated by objects which resembled but were not comets, so he compiled a list of them.

NGC- New General Catalog
The New General Catalogue of Nebulae and Clusters of Stars (abbreviated as NGC) is a well-known catalogue of deep-sky
objects compiled by John Louis Emil Dreyer in 1888 as a new version of John Herschel’s General Catalogue of Nebulae and Clusters of Stars.
The NGC contains 7,840 objects, known as the NGC objects. It is one of the largest comprehensive catalogues, as it includes all types of deep space objects and is not confined to, for example, galaxies.

IC – Index Catalog
Dreyer also published two supplements to the NGC in 1895 and 1908,
known as the Index Catalogues, describing a further 5,386 astronomical objects.

PGC – Principal Galaxies
The Catalogue of Principal Galaxies (PGC) is an astronomical catalog published in 1989 that lists B1950 and J2000
equatorial coordinates and cross-identifications for 73,197 galaxies.

back in April..
While waiting for the Comet to Rise…
I captured this 72 minute exposure(4 min subs x 18) using a Baader Modified Canon Rebel Xsi, & 5.5 inch F5 Newt. Reflector at my Observatories in Yellow Springs, Ohio on 04-12-2016. The Line in the image is a satellite trail as it passed through the Field of View, this happens a lot in long exposures!

Best Regards,
John Chumack

Mars at Opposition 2016

Mars at Opposition 2016

Mars at Opposition for 2016!
The Planet Mars on 05-23-2016. I captured it near Midnight on 05-23-2016 from my backyard Observatory in Dayton. We had
slightly above average seeing.

Every 26 Months Mars gets close to Earth and provides Awesome views of its surface through small telescopes.
Mars Reached Opposition on Sunday May 22, 2016 at 07:10 EDT, or 11:10 UTC, and it will be at its largest (18.4”) across for this Opposition.

The View of Mars last night Centered around Elysium Planitia & Elysium Fosse, & Phlegra Dorsa region.
North a south polar caps & blue limb clouds are visible. Elysium Mons is a Massive Volcanoe on Mars, although not the Largest,
that title goes to Olympus Mons, but still impressive in size.

Look for the two little dark patches near the upper center of the globe,
Elysium Mons Volcano is the lighter beige Patch just below the longer dark patch on the left.

Elysium Mons is a volcano on Mars located in the volcanic province Elysium, at 25.02°N 147.21°E, in the Martian eastern hemisphere.
It stands about 13.9 km (46,000 ft) above the surrounding lava plains, and about 16 km (52,000 ft) above the Martian datum.
Its diameter is about 240 km (150 mi), with a summit caldera about 14 km (8.7 mi) across. It is flanked by the smaller volcanoes Hecates
Tholus to the northeast, and Albor Tholus to the southeast.

Elysium Mons was discovered in 1972 in images returned by the Mariner 9 orbiter.
Best Regards,
John Chumack

Mercury Transits the Sun

Mercury & Bird Transit

Mercury Transit Video & Pic, A pleasant Surprise while imaging Mercury – check out what I found on one of my videos the Bird of Prey Transits the Sun with Mercury!

The Planet Mercury & Bird of Prey Transit the Sun 05-09-2016, captured at Presque Isle State Park, Erie, PA.  Captured using my Lunt 60mm/50F Hydrogen Alpha Solar scope & QHY5IIL CCD Camera, on my portable AVX tracking Mount.  Shooting through high cirrus clouds, you can see The Planet Mercury as a tiny black dot at the Lower left edge of the Sun. the first part of the video clip shows the original 15 fps that I captured at(buzzes by fast), then I slowed the video down to 2fps, and looped it so you can catch the bird of Prey flapping its wings as it Transits the Sun.

Check out my short Video clip

Best Regards,

John Chumack