Herschel 400 Objects

NGC 4303=M61: Barred Spiral Galaxy (Virgo) RA: 12h 21.9m / DEC: +04° 28'.3
Instrument: 10-inch Starfinder

M61 is a 9.7 magnitude SBc-type galaxy in Virgo. It appears as a 7'x4' oval gauzy patch at 129X. This barred spiral is located 1.2 degrees north of 5.0 magnitude 16 Virginis. The sketch at left records a bright stellar nucleus and just the subtlest hint of spiral structure in my 10-inch Starfinder. A bar feature runs northeast to southwest through the core over a distance of 4'. One spiral arm is seen curving counter-clockwise from the northeast extreme of the bar. The other arm extends from the opposite extreme, also curving counter-clockwise. Six 11th through 14th magnitude stars dot he field.

NGC 4293 NGC 4314


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Revised: February 14, 2002 [WDF]