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Astronomy picture of the week - Bodes Galaxy

Bodes Galaxy

WE ARE fast approaching Galaxy season so this week's picture shows the grand design spiral galaxy M81 also known as Bodes Galaxy.

This Galaxy is one of the largest best placed galaxies for imaging and part of our local group. The spiral structure together with H Alpha star forming regions show up well in the outer spiral arms in this picture.

The energetic M82  or cigar Galaxy also appears in the picture showing  not only its irregular shape but the violent outburst extending out into space from the centre of the galaxy. Keen eyed observers may also be able to spot some very faint galaxies beneath M81 shown as tiny smudges of light

Image courtesy of NWAS.