I’m happy to post a first image after being out of business for nearly 6 months due to technical problems in my remote observatory (and Covid-19 travel restrictions).
At the lower left is NGC 4631, known as the Whale Galaxy. Below it hovers the small galaxy NGC 4627 which is partially responsible for distorting the shape of the Whale. At the upper right is NGC 4656, the Hockey Stick Galaxy, which is also distorted by a smaller galaxy, NGC 4657, which is located right at the tip of the “blade” of the hockey stick. All of these galaxies lie at the same distance, about 25 million light years.
NGC 4631 and NGC 4656
Telescope: 16″ f3.75 Dream Scope
Camera: FLI ML16803
Mount: ASA DDM85
Exposure: 7 hours (36x300s L + 3x15x300s RGB)
March 2020 – February 2021
Location: Southern Alps, France