What a great view of Markarian’s Chain! Amateur astronomer Richard Richins took this image with a 300mm Canon f/4 lens (mounted to a Canon T2i). Look closely, as Richard says there are well over 100 galaxies in this image! Click the image for a larger, better view of Markarian’s Chain, which is a stretch of galaxies in the Virgo Cluster. It is called a chain because, when viewed from Earth, the galaxies appear almost linked together in a curved line. It was named after the Armenian astrophysicist, B. E. Markarian, who discovered their common motion in the early 1960s. Some of the galaxies seen here include M84 (NGC 4374), M86 (NGC 4406), NGC 4477, NGC 4473, NGC 4461, NGC 4458, NGC 4438 and NGC 4435. How many can you find?
Thanks to Richard for sharing his image with Universe Today. See more of his work at his website, Enchanted Skies.
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