Click here for a higher resolution image of the Fornax Dwarf (2.11 Mb)



The Details
The Fornax Dwarf Galaxy
Astro-Physics 12" Mak-Cass f/8
Astro-Physics 1600 Mount with absolute encoders
FLI 16803 Proline CCD
Tru-Balance LRGB Filters - Gen 2
Several nights during January 2016
Las Campanas Observatory, Chile
L 16 x 1200 sec 1x1 bin; RGB 8 each x 900 sec, 1x1 bin
ACP, Maxim DL/CCD, CCDStack 2, Photoshop CS5
Field of View: 49' x 49' centered on RA 02h40m02s
DEC -34°24’31” (2000.0) . North angle 179.5°; east 90° CCW from north
This very faint elliptical dwarf galaxy was discovered by the American astronomer Harlow Shapley in 1938 while examining plates taken with the 24” reflector at the Boyden Observatory in South Africa.  The Fornax Dwarf is a satellite of the Milky Way lying 450,000 light-years distant and spanning about 3,000 light-years in dimension.   It consists mainly of Population II stars and contains an amazing 6 globular clusters.  One of its clusters, NGC 1049, was actually noted by John Herschel nearly 100 years before the host galaxy itself was discovered.  The brightest stars in the Fornax Dwarf are measured at about 19th magnitude, making it a very elusive object indeed.

The above image is annotated to show four of the six globular clusters contained within the galaxy.  The remaining two clusters (Fornax 1 and 5) are outside the field of view of this image but clearly within grasp of the 12-inch Mak-Cass telescope.

Total exposure time was 11 hours 20 minutes. This image is the result of a collaborative effort between Howard Hedlund of Astro-Physics, Inc. and Dave Jurasevich.




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