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Messier 60,NGC 4660 with Tidal Filament


Virgo constellation name comes after hydra when we talk about the constellation size, Virgo is home to dozens of gorgeous galaxies for example Messier 60 , Messier 104 , The Markarians chain etc.

Virgo constellation was first catalogued by Ptolemy in 2nd century.


16" F3.7 DreamScope Newtonian ,16803FLI PL CCD badder LRGB www.insightobservatory.com
NGC 4460 with Tidal filament shot from insightobservatory

NGC 4660 NGC 4660 lies in the Virgo constellation, it is a well studied elliptical galaxy which has a strong disk component .It has been assumed that the disk properties in ngc 4660 is primordial and the object has not undergone a significant interaction or a merger to produce the filament. A long curved filament pushes out of the ngc 4660 in the direction of messier 59 galaxy. Astronomers think that a major event would have taken place few x10(8) years. Th filament was first discovered with the help of UK Schmidt Telescope, NGC 4660 has been researched in several ways by the astronomers over the years. There have been a few previous photometric and structure studies of NGC 4660 refer to this https://arxiv.org/abs/1607.04670

Tidal filament shows up in our data

Messier 60 Messier 60 is gigantic elliptical class galaxy that is located in same constellation Virgo. The magnitude of the galaxy is around 9.8 and is around 55 million light years away from us. Messier 60 was discovered by Italian astronomer Barnaba and comments on this object were that it looked very pale as if one sees a comet. If seen from a dark site the M60 can be easily seen with a medium aperture telescope, Its partner galaxy NGC 4647 is a beautiful spiral galaxy which is just next to it.

Messier 60 and NGC 4647 insightobservatory

Processing Information Processing this area was quite amusing, I had to be very careful while performing steps as the core of these galaxies is easily blown out if not payed much attention .When processing a group of galaxies we have to be very delicate with the process. I agree many would want to bring out complete details from the region but its always advised not to over stretch your data which isn't of much quality.

  • My Processing was done in the 3 software - CCD stack, Pixinsight, Photoshop cc.

  • My first step was to get the right value on the RGB data so I calculated the RGB values separately and then combined them in CCD stack in non-linear phase.

Non Linear image-small stretch-stretched

  • Then i proceeded to photoshop and gave a good amount of stretching's just shown above and was careful regarding the core as it can get easily saturated

  • Similarly i applied it to Luminance frame and did deconvolution in pixinsight, I also cleared gradients which might cause trouble, Automatic Background Extractor took care of it.

  • Now it was time for combining the Luminance to the RGB, i used different blending mode and opacity to combine both of the data into one, Luminance can be very harsh on RGB data sometimes so its advised to be very careful while combining it.

  • There were tiny Galaxies in the big field of view but could not do much justice to them as they were quite faint and required a lot more data which we would invest year perhaps.

  • Now it was time for some Noise reduction so i went to pixinsight and opened TGV denoise and made a rough change and applied it normally to see how it will act on it. it was bit harsh on it so i made a mask to those region which i didn't want to get noise reduced, then i proceeded and applied the NR but still wasn't much satisfied as the background was becoming blotchy so i went to photoshop and combined both of the images into one using different opacity and to create a nice and even view of the region

  • I gave a saturation boost in both pixinsight and photoshop using different techniques so we can appreciate the color information captured from this telescope

  • While processing i noticed a filament coming out from the NGC 4660 so i decided to use the HDR technique to bring out the fine details of filament in this galaxy

Before vs After
  • In the end i decided to apply some sharpening to the desired galaxy eg NGC 4647 next to the Messier 60 the wisp dusty is now visible more then before

  • There was lot more things that were added to processing which would be revealed in a subscription based post

I hope you enjoyed reading my content and if you liked i would appreciate you to give me a follow on my instagram - @mr_deepsky


Here is the final image of this region some information about Imaging equipment 16" F3.7 DreamScope Newtonian ,16803FLI PL CCD badder LRGB 5X300secL 10X300secRed 10x300secGreen 10X300secBlue 1x1binning CCD stack,Pixinsight,Photoshop Image credit copyright :MuirEvenden,Michael Petrasko,UtkarshMishra www.insightobservatory.com Enjoy the full view here



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