M63 (Sunflower Galaxy, NGC 5055)

Telescope: Planewave 17" CDK reflector, 1940 mm FL
Camera: FLI-PL6303E, 3072 x 2048 pixels
Exposure: 6 x 4 minutes. Seeing 1.7" FWHM. Processed with PixInsight. Blooming removed with Photoshop.
Location: Mayhill, New Mexico (Elevation 7380')
Image Center (J2000): RA 13h 15m 50s, Dec 42° 01' 39"
Image Size: 26' x 26'

Spiral galaxy with a bright central disc surrounded by many short, mottled spiral arm segments less tightly wound in the outer regions. Bright central region is 6"in diameter. Spiral arms are streaked with dust lanes. Many star forming regions and dark dust lanes. Mag 9.3, 12' x 7'. Easy visual object with high central surface brightness. This image resolves the galaxy nearly to the core. Imaged to about 21st mag. One of the first galaxies in which spiral structure was identified.
Raw data for this image can be downloaded.


M63 (Sunflower Galaxy, NGC 5055), Spiral galaxy with a bright central disc surrounded by many short, mottled spiral arm segments less tightly wound in the outer regions. Bright central region is 6

Object Label Identifier Notes
Star Cluster Unlabeled squares 11 are marked.
Galaxy G1 2MFGC 10580 Faint edge-on Galaxy seen through M63. See image below for 2MFGC 10580 close up.
Galaxy G2 2MASX J13153932+4205386 m=16.5g
Galaxy G3 LEDA 2187167 mV=16.4, 0,5' x 0.3'
Galaxy G5 SDSS J131607.70+415102.2 mV=18.2
Galaxy UGCA 342 UGCA 342 Highly irregular galaxy, mag 15.9, 1.6' x 0.6'

Click on the image to display the plate solved image with annotations. 4' across M63 is about 30,000 light years. Star Clusters cataloged by S. S. Larsen in 2004, 27 likely clusters are brighter than mag 20.0.


Hubble Close-up of Edge-on Galaxy 2MFGC 10580

Hubble Close-up of Edge-on Galaxy 2MFGC 10580

The Edge-on galaxy on the edge of M63. Almost no information is available on this object, mag 19.8, apparent size 0.25' x 0.05'. Image combined from Hubble filters F435W and F606W.