M33 NGC598 Triangulum Galaxy


Telescope / Lens TMB 80 mm f/ 6 with Tele-Vue .8 Reducer TRF2008 / reduced TMB to f/4.8   –  384 mm  Focal Length
Mount Type Astrophysics 1200
 Filters Astrodon LRGB e-series of balanced filters     (generation 1) 9nm HA
 Film  CCD
 Exposure 345 minutes (5.75 Hours) HaLRGB (Ha=50 min; L=145 min; RGB= 150 min.; (5 min. & 10 min. sub-images)
 Processing CCDSoft, CCDStack, AIP, Photoshop CS2
 Date  09/19/2009
 Location Snow Peak, S/E of Cottage Grove, Oregon                122° 52′ 35″ W, 43° 31′ 21″N
 Conditions 4658′ elevation, magnitude 6+ Skies; Clear ;

M 33 (NGC 598) Triangulum Galaxy
M33 is visible to the naked eye from a very dark sky site, Bortle 3 or better.  The Triangulum Galaxy is a very challenging naked eye object but it can be seen.   M33 is a Type SC galaxy belonging to the local group, 0.9 mpc or 3.1 Million Light Years away. This image was taken with a TMB triplet CNC APO 80mm f/6 with a TeleVue .8 reducer / flattener (TRF2008). The full resolution image actually reveals the hint of structure and stars within the many red nebula knots shown throughout its arms. These Nebula (Red areas) are star forming areas much like the Great Orion Nebula (M42) and Eagle Nebula (M16). I had taken a much shorter image years ago with an Orion ED 80 and wanted to really capture more detail. You can also see several background galaxies in this image.

The bright Red nebula (upper right portion) is NGC  604.  NGC form the largest known HII region currently known.  The nebula spans 1500 light years.  M33 itself is approximately 60,000 light years in diameter, home to 40 billion stars.  Our own Milky Way (100,000 LY diameter) is estimated to have 400 Billion stars.