Galaxy in Coma Berenices

Messier 85 has been classified either as an elliptical galaxy or a lenticular galaxy. At first glance it does have the typical smooth appearance of an elliptical, but on closer inspection it appears to have faint and short arms extending in the north-south direction. It is a member of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies.

M85 is gravitationally interacting with NGC 4395, the barred spiral galaxy to its east (left).

Magnitude 10.0
Apparent Size 7.1' x 5.5'
Distance (light yrs) 60 million
Right Ascension 12:25.4
Declination +18 11
Field of View 35' x 26'

Image details:  Exposure times of 14 minutes luminance and 6 minutes each of red, green and blue, taken with an SBIG ST-8300M imager and a 12" Meade telescope at f/5.6.

June 2013