NGC 253 - Galaxy in Sculptor


Copyright 2007 Hap Griffin

One of the brighter galaxies visible to us, NGC 253 belongs to the Sculptor group...the next door neighbor to our own Local Group of galaxies, which includes our own Milky Way.  With an apparent diameter of almost one half degree (the size of the full moon), it is readily visible in small telescopes.  NGC 253 lies at a distance of 12.8 million light years.  

Date/Location:    October 6, 2007    Griffin/Hunter Observatory    Bethune, SC
Instrument:    10" f/4.7 Orion Newtonian w/ Baader MPCC
Focal Ratio:    f/4.7
Guiding:    Auto via SBIG ST-237 through Orion ED80
Conditions:    Visually clear - seeing not steady
Weather:    65 F, calm
Camera:    Canon 350XT (modified)
Exposure:    160 minutes (32 x 5-minute exposures) @ ISO 800
Filters:    Baader UV/IR block in camera
Processing:    Focused and captured with DSLRFocus.  RAW to TIFF conversion, frame calibrations, alignment and stacking, Digital Development, Adaptive Richardson_Lucy deconvolution, scaling and JPEG conversion with ImagesPlus.  Noise reduction with NeatImage.  Final tweaking in Photoshop CS2.