The Black-Eye Galaxy - M64
Camera: Finger Lakes Instrumentation MicroLine ML8300 with FLI CFW-2-7 Filter Wheel
Mount: Paramount ME
Scope: Supernova Astrograph - 12.5" Zambuto - My Design
Exposure Time: 18x10 minutes L unbinned: 10x5 minutes RGB binned 2x2
Post-Production: MaxIm DL, CCDStack, PixInsight, and Photoshop CS5
This object, aptly named the Black-Eye Galaxy and designated as Messier 64 (M64), is located roughly 17 million light-years away in the constellation Coma Berenices. Observations have shown that M64 is actually composed of two, counter-rotating groupings of stars, one in the inner 3,000 light-years and the other extending to roughly 40,000 light-years, and interestingly, rotating in the opposite direction. The dusty black eye and bizarre rotation is likely the result of a merger of two different galaxies.