Markarian's Chain (NGC 4374)
Magnitude: Variable (ranges from 9 to 15, depending upon galaxy)
Size: Approximately 3 degrees
Distance: At least 70 million light years
RA: 12h 25m 06s
Dec: 12 degrees 53' 00"
Markarian's chain was named after an Armenian astronomer in the 1970s
and represents a beautiful stretch of galaxies that forms part of the
Virgo Cluster. Our own Local Group of galaxies (Milky Way, large
small Magellenic Clouds, M31, M32, M100, M33) is currently receding
the Virgo Cluster at a rate of about 1000 km/second. However, it
is anticipated that our Local Group will eventually stop receding from
the Virgo Cluster and will ultimately accelerate towards this region
from the Virgo Cluster influences us even at distances of 70 million
years). M84 and M86 are the 2 large elliptical galaxies on the
(from right to left). M88 is the prominent spiral galaxy on the
left. The most dominant galaxy in this region is M87, which is
of the field of view to the lower left. Click on the highest
resolution link to find many of the smaller galaxies in this
region. Also click on the negative image
to detect the many fainter galaxies more easily.
Date: December 26, 2003
Scope: Takahashi Sky 90 at f4.5 with field flattener/focal
reducer, piggybacked on LX90 (which is mounted on a Meade Superwedge).
Autoguider: STV with e-finder.
Camera: Canon 10D.
Filter: IDAS LPS.
Exposures: 16 x 4' at ISO 1600.
Conditions: Temperature 30 degrees F; average transparency;
average seeing; dry; somewhat breezy (I needed to exclude about 20% of
shots due to the wind).
conversion, adaptive dark frame calibration, alignment, adaptive
addition averaging done in ImagesPlus; Levels, curves, and layer mask adjustments in
Photoshop; mild smoothing using Pleiades SGBNR software.
note: Graphics on this website may not be reproduced without
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