Galaxy Group in Draco


This intriguing trio of galaxies is sometimes called the NGC 5985/Draco Group and so (quite reasonably) is located in the northern constellation Draco. From right to left are face-on spiral NGC 5985, elliptical galaxy NGC 5982, and edge-on spiral NGC 5981 -- all within this single telescopic field of view spanning a little more than half the width of the full moon. While this grouping is far too small to be a galaxy cluster and has not been cataloged as a compact group, these galaxies all do lie roughly 100 million light-years from planet Earth. (Description from APOD) This image was taken over 7 nights beginning May 30, 2011 and ending June 7. Exposure time totaled 18 hours. Smoke from fires in the mountains south of here diluted the color quite a bit so very long exposure times were needed. Click on the image for a magnified view. 

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