Tag Archives: galaxy hunting

Tracking Down Some Galaxies

For a good look at an Sb galaxy, check out our nearest spiral neighbor, M31 (NGC 224), the Andromeda Galaxy. You can detect its soft, elongated glow by following a line northwest from 2nd-magnitude Mirach (Beta [b] Andromedae) through 4th-magnitude Mu (m) And. In an 8-inch telescope, the most impressive feature may be the prominent jet-black dust lanes that skirt the galaxy’s core. But you don’t need a scope to enjoy this beauty. At 2.2 million light-years away, M31 is the most distant object visible to the naked eye.

androLinger near M31 a bit and check out NGC 206, a huge cloud of young, massive stars located along the southwest periphery of the galaxy, about 40′ from the core. The combined light from these stars is faintly visible in a 6- to 8-inch scope. Users of 16-inch