Location of Photo:
San Juan Bautista, CA
Date/Time of photo:
June 8, 2008
Vixen VC200L @ f/9, SBIG STL-11000M, Astro-Physics Mach1
The Whirlpool Galaxy is the prototypical face-on, grand design spiral galaxy. Originally, it was not known whether the companion galaxy seen on the left of this image was truly interacting with M51, or whether it might have been located in the background or foreground. The spiral structure of many galaxies was first observed in this object.