M63 – Sunflower Galaxy

“M63 is an Sb spiral in the direction of Canes Venatici. It was discovered in 1779 by Pierre Mechain, a friend of Charles Messier, who composed the Messier catalog. The nickname of this galaxy, the “Sunflower” galaxy is reasonably obvious, since it has a shape and coloration similar to a sunflower and exhibits beautiful yellow colors as well as blue. The latter are regions with recent ongoing star formation. Its spiral arms were first noticed in the mid-19th century.
The Sunflower galaxy is 37 million light-years distant, and is part of a group of galaxies together with M51.”


Image credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA

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