Perseus Galaxy Cluster by Howard Trottier
This galaxy cluster, known as Abell 426, is situated just two degrees east-northeast of the famed eclipsing binary star Algol, Beta (β) Persei. Abell 426 swarms with hundreds of galaxies, but it’s a difficult visual target best attacked by those with larger telescopes under dark skies. However, its two brightest members, 12.0-magnitude NGC1275 and 12.7-magnitude NGC1272, are within range of a ten inch scope in good conditions. In our photo of the week, they are the prominent pair near the centre-left edge of the frame. Abell 426 lies at a distance of roughly 250 million light years—about 100 times farther than the Andromeda Galaxy.
The detail-rich image above was captured by Howard Trottier at his Cabin in the Sky Observatory, located in the southern Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. Howard used a PlaneWave CDK17 17 inch f/6.8 Corrected Dall-Kirkham astrographic telescope and a Apogee Alta U16M CCD camera to record 14 hours total exposure through LRGB filters.
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