M108


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By
Catalog
Obj Type
Location
Date Taken:
Smoot
Messier 108
Galaxy
Mayhill, NM
04-12-2008
Description
M108 was Discovered by Pierre Méchain in 1781.

Messier 108 (M108, NGC 3556) is a nice edge-on spiral galaxy situated near the conspicuous star Beta Ursa Majoris, and in one field of view with the Owl Nebula, M97.  

According to Charles Messier's hand-written preliminary and unpublished version of his catalog, M108, similar to M109, was discovered by Pierre Méchain shortly after M97 (which he had found February 16, 1781): Méchain discovered M108 3 days after M97 on February 19, 1781, and M109 on March 12, 1781. Both objects were apparently also observed by Charles Messier when he measured the position of M97 (March 24, 1781), but apparently he didn't find occasion to obtain positions for these objects at that time. Messier listed this object, M108, under number "98" in his preliminary manuscript version of his catalog, without giving a position. According to Owen Gingerich, he measured an acurate position at a later time which he added by hand in his personal copy of the catalog. Both objects M108 and M109 are also mentioned in Pierre Méchain's letter of May 6, 1783, which supports the suspicion that he probably wanted to add them to a later edition of Messier's catalog. The object M108 was finally added to Messier's catalog by Owen Gingerich in 1953.

Technical Details
Exposure Time:
LRGB_HaR_HaG_HaB with 4.5 hours of L, 3.5 hours of Ha, 3 hours of B, 3 hours of G, and 3.75 hours of R
Camera:
SBIG STL-11000M
Telescope:
RCOS 16 inch f/8.7 Ritchey-Chretien
Mount:
Software Bisque Paramount ME
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