NGC 4438: The Eyes

Click on image for larger version.

These interacting galaxies (NGC 4438 on the left and NGC 4435 to the right) lie in the heart of the Virgo cluster. If either of these galaxies was a spiral, such structures were disturbed long ago by gravitational forces due to close encounters with other galaxies and the heavyweight - M87. These galaxies are around 40 million light years away.


20in RC Optical Systems telescope Operating at f/8.4
Paramount ME Robotic Telescope Mount
SBIG ST10XME CCD camera with color filter wheel

L R G B color production was used to create this image.

Luminance = 60 minutes binned 1x1
Red = 10 minutes binned 2x2
Green = 10 minutes binned 2x2
Blue = 10 minutes binned 2x2

  • The short exposure times meant that slightly different processing steps were taken to display the faintest aspects of the image (hopefully without making it look too noisy).
  • Digital Development (DDP) via Maxim/DL was also used in order to display the the very dim and very bright details of the image simultaneously.

  • Minimum credit line: Adam Block/NOAO/AURA/NSF

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    Updated: 01/31/04