The Markarian Chain of Galaxies
(Click on Picture for larger view)

Added March 9, 2021 ...
This view just 'BLOWS MY MIND'!
This is part of the most famous cluster of galaxies, the Virgo Cluster, and this is part of the "Markarian’s Chain" of galaxies within the Virgo cluster. At the core of the Virgo cluster lie the three large elliptical galaxies M84, M86 (right center) and M87 (Not seen but would be below the lower left of this view). These galaxies probably formed from the merger of many smaller galaxies and are much more massive than our own galaxy. This cluster is about 48 - 65 million light-years from Earth. This is a 4-hour exposure
- M84: 400 billion stars ... 60 million LY
- M86: 400 billion stars ... 52 million LY
- M87: 1 Trillion stars ... 53.5 million LY

That Techy Stuff for those who want to know:
Telescope: Orion EON 130mm Apochromatic Triplet (FL=910mm)
Reducer: Orion 0.8x for refactors with less than 1000 mm focal length
Effective focal length with reducer: 728mm
Camera: Altair Astro Hypercam 294c Pro at -10°C
Mount: Celestron CGX
Capture Software: N.I.N.A.
Subframes: 48x300second
Calibration frames: Darks & Flats
Seeing conditions: Excellent
Light Pollution Bortal index: 4.5

Return to Pat Prokop's Heavenly Backyard Astronomy Page