The Needle Galaxy

October 26, 2017

Needle_NGC4565_20x30ChumackHRweb_42717 (1)

PhotographerJohn Chumack
Summary AuthorJohn Chumack

Caldwell 38 (NGC 4565) is an edge-on spiral galaxy, shining at magnitude 10.4 in the direction of the constellation of Coma Berenices. Discovered by Sir William Herschel in 1785, NGC 4565 is approximately 40 million light years away from us. It's nicknamed the Needle Galaxy because of its thin profile. The central bulge of NGC 4565 is thought to have about 240 globular star clusters that surround it, far more than the number of such clusters that encircle own Milky Way galaxy.

If we could somehow back away some 30-50 million light years from our own Milky Way galaxy, it would look similar to the Needle. This luminous, edge-on galaxy is definitely a favorite target to observe through my backyard telescopes. Note that the smaller spiral galaxy to the upper left of the Needle is NGC 4562. Photo taken on April 20, 2017.

Photo Details: Captured from my backyard in the city of Dayton, Ohio; Celestron 6 inch Newtonian Telescope; ZWO ASI 174MM Cooled monochrome Cmos Camera; a 2 hour exposure.