Deep Sky Galaxy

The Leo Quadruplet

While the Leo Triplet is well known, there is a fourth member of this group a little further away and it’s depicted here in this 2.5 degree field.

All three galaxies in the main triplet show signs of interaction and the group as a whole is listed in Arp’s Atlas of Peculiar galaxies as ARP 317. M66 is also listed separately as ARP 16 (Spiral with detached segments). Distance to the group is about 33 million light years and measuring this picture shows that the nuclei of M65 & M66 could be as close together as 192,000 light years. By comparison, our nearest galactic neighbour is M31, Andromeda at 2.5 million light years. Leo

The image is a stack of 15x 3 minute exposures at ISO400 using the WO Zenithstar  70 with a Sky Watcher field flattener.  Some trailing is apparent and the individual frames could use rather more exposure time and/or a higher ISO setting.



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