It weighs in at 1,230 billion solar masses, spans 220,000 light years in diameter and harbours a trillion stars. It is the Andromeda galaxy. When compared to our Milky Way it’s a monstrosity of epic proportions, yet it is still a rather minor galaxy on the entirety of the universe.
This image was taken with a Canon T2i DSLR using a Celestron Nexstar 4 inch Telescope, auto-guided with an 80mm Orion telescope. It took a single 20 minute exposure, and a location far enough south, to catch Andromeda’s dust. The photo was taken by amature astronomer, Mike Larwood, who explains further, “ISO for the shot was 800 and the Telescope shoots about f/11 aperture, hence the long exposure needed to image the dust rings with such a small lens.”
Congratulations, Mike, you have the Lemon’s first featured photo.