M 81 – Bode’s Galaxy


M 81 is a galaxy often photographed as a duo because it appears in the same field as M 82 (the Cigar galaxy) with smaller telescopes. It is relatively close to us at a distance of 12 million light years. It is also modest in size at 87,000 light years compared to our own galaxy (100,000 light years).

It is part of a group of around forty galaxies located in the constellation Ursa Major. Its location relatively close to the celestial pole means that it can be observed most of the year.

Technical details:

Telescope: Celestron Edge HD14 and 0.7x focal reducer
Mount: Paramount MX+
Camera: ZWO ASI 1600
Filters LRGB ZWO
Exposure: 67 6-minute subs with luminance filter and 15 6-minute subs each in Red, Green and Blue
Place: Backyard observatory in Sainte-Sophie, Qc
Date: January 2020