Sunday, 23 February 2014

Galaxy M106

The Plough or Big dipper has many wonderful galaxy's to image such as M81 and M82 the famous M51 with its amazing intertwining arms but there are also others perhaps not so famous that deserve our attention and this is one of them. The astronomer who discovered it Pierre Mechain died at the age of 60 years old from yellow fever!

Messier 106 (also known as NGC 4258) is a spiral galaxy in the constellation Canes Venatici. It was discovered by Pierre M├ęchain in 1781. M106 is at a distance of about 22 to 25 million light-years away from Earth. It is also a Seyfert II galaxy, which means that due to x-rays and unusual emission lines detected, it is suspected that part of the galaxy is falling into a super-massive black hole in the center. NGC 4217 is a possible companion galaxy of Messier 106.