Pinwheel Galaxy – M101

In Astrophotography by Matt Shetzer

Pinwheel Galaxy

Pinwheel Galaxy

The Pinwheel Galaxy (also known as Messier 101, M101 or NGC 5457) is approximately 21 million light-years away from Earth. It is a face-on spiral galaxy in the constellation Ursa Major. It was discovered by Pierre Méchain in 1781[a] and was communicated that year to Charles Messier, who verified its position for inclusion in the Messier Catalogue as one of its final entries.

On February 28, 2006, NASA and the European Space Agency released a very detailed image of the Pinwheel Galaxy, which was the largest and most-detailed image of a galaxy by Hubble Space Telescope at the time. I am looking forward to when the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) images this beautiful galaxy.

ObjectPinwheel Galaxy – M101
Wiki Link
ConstellationUrsa Major
Other Names contained in imageMessier 101, M101, NGC 5457
Imaging telescopes or lensesTakahashi FSQ -106ED4
Imaging camerasQHY268M
MountsSoftware Bisque Paramount MYT
Focal reducersNone
SoftwareSoftware Bisque The Sky X, PHD Lab PHD2, NINA, Viking,  PixInsight, Photoshop, Lightroom
FiltersAstrodon LRGB Gen2 E-Series Tru-Balance  36mm unmounted. Chroma Technology Narrowband 3nm Ha, SII, OIII – 36mm Unmounted
AccessoriesMoonlite NightCrawler 35 focuser, Maxdome II, Digital Loggers Pro Switch, Sky Alert Weather Station, Pegagsus Ultimate Powerbox v2, Starlight Xpress filter wheel.
Guiding Telescope or LensesOrion 60mm Guide Scope
Guiding CameraZWO ASI224MC Guide Camera
Imaging Dates4/7/22, 4/8/22, 4/9/22
FramesLuminance: 45×300″ (3.7h)  Gain 25, Photographic Mode, Temp -10C, Bin 1×1
Red: 22×300″ (1.83h) Gain 25, Photographic Mode, Temp -10C, Bin 1×1
Green: 21×300″ (1.75h) Gain 25, Photographic Mode, Temp -10C, Bin 1×1
Blue: 21×300″ (1.75h) Gain 25, Photographic Mode, Temp -10C, Bin 1×1
Ha: 11×1200″ (3.6h) Gain 60, High Gain Mode, Temp -10C, Bin 1×1
Integration12h 35′
Flats20 per Filter
Flat Darks40
Bortle Dark-Sky Scale:2
RA center210.804796
DEC center54.34869964
Pixel scale3.76
Resolution6280 x 4210
LocationsSirus 3.5m Observatory, Carbondale Colorado
Data sourceBackyard
Post Processing TechniquesPixInsight to Photoshop to Lightroom
Median FWHM PixelsL 2.829  R 2.525  G 2.569 B 2.585 Ha 2.580


Pinwheel Galaxy – M101 was last modified: October 27th, 2022 by Matt Shetzer