Tag Archives: Virgo Cluster

Behold: the galaxies of the Virgo Cluster (there could be up to 2000 of them) scattered across a deep telescopic field of view, spanning about three full moons, captured in dark skies near Jalisco, Mexico. To wit:

About 50 million light-years distant, the Virgo Cluster is the closest large galaxy cluster to our own local galaxy group. Prominent here are Virgo’s bright elliptical galaxies from the Messier catalog, M87 at the top left [pic 2], and M84 and M86 seen (bottom to top) below and right of centre [pic 3]. M84 and M86 are recognised as part of Markarian’s Chain, a visually striking line-up of galaxies vertically on the right side of [the top] frame. Near the middle of the chain lies an intriguing interacting pair of galaxies, NGC 4438 and NGC 4435, known to some as Markarian’s Eyes [pic 4]. Of course giant elliptical galaxy M87 dominates the Virgo cluster. It’s the home of a super massive black hole, the first black hole ever imaged by planet Earth’s Event Horizon Telescope.

(Image 1, detail 2,3: Fernando Pena; Image 4: Ken Crawford (Rancho Del Sol Observatory))