The unstoppable Fireworks Galaxy

Lionel Majzik
Location of photo
Tápióbicske, Pest, Hungary
Date/Time of photo
Nikon D3300, Sky-Watcher 150/750 mm Newtonian telescope
The supernova SN 2017eaw was detected on May 14, 2017 in the Fireworks Galaxy (NGC 6946), 22 million light-years away. The galaxy is located at the edge of the Cepheus and Cygnus constellations. The galaxy received its name (“Fireworks”) from the frequent supernova-explosions. The supernova is the nearest to the galaxy's core among the four bright stars in the main spiral arm, on the right side of the galaxy. At the time when the photograph was taken, the supernova was around 13.1 magnitude. On the upper right part of the picture, you can see the NGC 6939 open cluster as well. I only managed to take the photograph at a moderately light-pollutied area; what is more, the atmospheric opacity was not really satisfactory either. The photograph was made in three nights. 10 days passed from the very first and the very last exposition. It is my pleasure that I managed to capture an “actual” astronomical event - which in reality happened 22 million years ago.
All comments must follow the Sky & Telescope Terms of Use and will be moderated prior to posting. Please be civil in your comments. Sky & Telescope reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter’s username, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.