Coma Galaxy Cluster

This small space of sky contains about 1,000 galaxies. Also known as Abell 1656, the Coma Cluster is over 300 million light-years away. The cluster, named after its parent constellation Coma Berenices, is near the Milky Way's north pole. This places the Coma Cluster in an area unobscured by dust and gas from the plane of the Milky Way, and easily visible by Earth viewers. Most of the galaxies that inhabit the central portion of the Coma Cluster are ellipticals. These featureless "fuzz-balls" are pale goldish brown in color and contain populations of old stars. Both dwarf, as well as giant ellipticals, are found in abundance in the Coma Cluster. This image was taken with my Takahashi FSQ-106 refractor and SBIG STL-11000 CCD Camera. The image was taken April 19-20, 2009 and totals 3 1/2 hours of exposures. Click on the image to see the small galaxies sprinkled all over the area.

All images © Mel Martin 2017     Contact Me