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NGC 7331 and the "Deerlick Group"

NGC 7331 and the "Deerlick Group"

SBIG ST-4000XCM
28x900 Seconds
Imager Temp -20C
Celestron 9.25 Reduced 0.63
30% Crop
Seeing "Poor" on CSC
Link to Larger JPEG

Deer Lick Group: The dominant galaxy is NGC 7331, a magnitude 10.3 spiral galaxy estimated to be close to 50 million light years away. It is thought that this is similar to what our galaxy would look like from a like distance and angle. It has a radius of about 32,000 light years. This group apparently was given this odd name "in commemoration of one of the finest nights of viewing EVER, at Deer Lick Gap, just off the Blue Ridge Parkway, in the NC mountains," by persons unnamed.

The galaxies in the Deerlick group other than NGC 7331 are 10x more distant On the top from left to right are NGC 7337 NGC 7340, NGC 7335, NGC 7336, PGC 2051985. On the bottom, NGC 7325 and NGC 7326.

NGC 7331 is one of the brighter galaxies which is not included in Messier's catalog. It exposes a fine spiral structure despite its small inclination from the edge-on position. NGC 7331 was among the earliest recognized spiral galaxies, and listed by Lord Rosse in his list of 14 "spiral or curvilinear nebulae" discovered before 1850.

September 16, 2009