The Virgo Cluster
of galaxies is the largest (containing between 1500-2000 galaxies)
and most central group in the Local Supercluster. Although it is
approximately 60 million light years away, it exerts a gravitaional
effect on our Local Group of galaxies.
contains what is known as the Markarian Chain, named after the Russian
astronomer who published a paper on it in 1961. He proposed that
these galaxies formed a physical system. The large elliptical galaxy
at center right is M86. M84 is just to its right. Also visible are
several other galaxies. NGC 4402 is just above M86; NGC 4388 is
at the bottom right. NGC4438 and NGC4435 (the Eyes) are the two
spiral galaxies to the left of M86.
The images were focused,
aligned, and combined in ImagesPlus. The two frames were aligned
using RegiStar. The mosaic was combined and adjusted (Levels, Curves,
Color Balance, Cropping) in Photoshop.
from my backyard observatory in southeastern Minnesota on 5/11/12
and 5/13/12. Temp: 40 F; Humidity: 60%