Galaxies - Glittering Lights - Marco Lorenzi
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The Large Magellanic Cloud

The Large Magellanic Cloud

Portuguese navigator Fernando de Magellan and his crew had plenty of time to study the southern sky during the first circumnavigation of planet Earth. As a result, two fuzzy cloud-like objects easily visible for southern hemisphere skygazers are known as the Clouds of Magellan. Of course, these star clouds are now understood to be dwarf irregular galaxies, satellites of our larger spiral Milky Way galaxy. An alluring sight in dark southern skies, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) pictured above is only about 180,000 light-years distant in the constellation Dorado. Spanning about 15,000 light-years or so, it is the most massive of the Milky Way's satellite galaxies and is the site of the closest supernova in modern times. The prominent red knot on the left is 30 Doradus, or the Tarantula Nebula, a giant star-forming region in the Large Magellanic Cloud, particularly well visible here because of the use in the final images stack of a narrow band filter that transmits only the red light of hydrogen atoms. (Text adapted from APOD).

More than 73 hours of total exposures went into this 4 panels mosaic covering about 140 square degrees of sky.

Pentax 67 EDIF 300mm f/4 - FLI Proline 16803 - Ha (1200m) OIII (820m) L (960m) R (470m) G (480m) B (490m) - Warrumbungle Observatory, Coonabarabran, NSW, Australia

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