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M87 - The Search for the Jet


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As a dummy run for my attempt to image the 3C 273 jet I thought I would have a try for the somewhat easier plasma jet emanating from the supermassive black hole at the centre of M87.

Here is 78 minutes of Lum data, captured with the Esprit 150/ASI 178 rig. I am 99% certain it is present on the stacked image, by comparing the orientation of the brighter pixels at about 11 o'clock with library images. I was a little uncertain as some of the brighter stars appear to have an artefact in about the same place. Interestingly  it actually shows a tiny bit of structural data on a single 3 min sub (inverted crop), sometimes less is more.

Are the sprinkling of lighter spots visible in the galaxy halo some of the thousands of globular clusters associated with this galaxy, or is that just my wishful thinking?😉

M872x2LumCombo26x3min-Luminance-session_1-mod-StAP.thumb.jpg.30667ed93c289d78c0fd5bfce9cfc71b.jpg

2021-04-06_22-22-09_5.20_180.00s_0013-StCrop.jpg.11625b81813a97d9c02ca762ca6ab81a.jpg

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As a dummy run for my attempt to image the 3C 273 jet I thought I would have a try for the somewhat easier plasma jet emanating from the supermassive black hole at the centre of M87. Here is 78 m

Interesting. Chance would have it that I pointed my telescope at the same patch of sky yesterday. After finishing my imaging session, I usually point my scope at some interesting object that is coming

Had a go myself at this too in 2019, I was equally amazed as you are @tomato

Posted Images

Excellent mate.  Well done, a great job.  Here..

https://skastro.net/m87-the-giant-elliptical-galaxy-in-virgo-tec-140/

..is mine from last year.  I want to add more to this.

You are correct, you have indeed indeed captured some of the supermassive Globular Clusters that surround M87.  M87's GC's dwarf in size and number those of our own galaxy, such is the number of galaxies that have merged to form M87 and the GC's are the long lost ghosts of those galaxies that owned those GC's.  It is not known why they should also be so much larger than our own, although that could just be a numbers thing....  If you have 15000 of something then chances are you'll have something much bigger than if you only have 250 like we do.  Such is the size of the largest of the GC's they can be seen across 60 million light years of space.

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43 minutes ago, kirkster501 said:

Excellent mate.  Well done, a great job.  Here..

https://skastro.net/m87-the-giant-elliptical-galaxy-in-virgo-tec-140/

..is mine from last year.  I want to add more to this.

You are correct, you have indeed indeed captured some of the supermassive Globular Clusters that surround M87.  M87's GC's dwarf in size and number those of our own galaxy, such is the number of galaxies that have merged to form M87 and the GC's are the long lost ghosts of those galaxies that owned those GC's.  It is not known why they should also be so much larger than our own, although that could just be a numbers thing....  If you have 15000 of something then chances are you'll have something much bigger than if you only have 250 like we do.  Such is the size of the largest of the GC's they can be seen across 60 million light years of space.

Thanks for the comments and info, Steve.
Wow, how big and bright are those globular clusters? I think it’s amazing that they can be detected with amateur kit at that distance.

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That's awesome @tomatoThanks for the inverted sub, makes sure I am seeing it correctly on the Lum stack.  As you mentioned further down, a reminder of just how amazing it is that we can capture and distinguish this type of detail from our back garden. 

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Interesting. Chance would have it that I pointed my telescope at the same patch of sky yesterday. After finishing my imaging session, I usually point my scope at some interesting object that is coming into position. Yesterday I decided to point it at M87, just because I had read about this galaxy during the day. I fired away at it, collecting 15 30 seconds subs. Registered and stacked them in PI, applied DBE and stretched the image. I cropped and rotated to approximately match your fov and resampled. Not at all in the same league as yours, but here you have it:

m87_jet.jpg.e64dd7f7f6617e2c1c7d1c372c622e97.jpg

m87_jet_inv.jpg.b7f1efa94b3386e3f8b25a45246f9398.jpg

 

Edited by wimvb
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I too have a fixation with 3C273.

I had an abortive session last week. Couldn't get the subs to stack.

Anyway, I'm hoping to have a go with the 10" Newt tonight. But I might now have a look at M87 instead.

Your image blows me away, those globs!! Pretty nebulae are ok if you like that sort of thing, galaxies are the real deal😎

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7 hours ago, Paul M said:

I too have a fixation with 3C273.

I had an abortive session last week. Couldn't get the subs to stack.

Anyway, I'm hoping to have a go with the 10" Newt tonight. But I might now have a look at M87 instead.

Your image blows me away, those globs!! Pretty nebulae are ok if you like that sort of thing, galaxies are the real deal😎

Thanks, 
 

I’m with you, nebulae are beautiful, but they are a bit local.😊

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Having seen what others have captured here is one taken with a MN180. I always thought it was a wind gust trail but it does now seen that I captured it

M87_Jet.jpg

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On 11/04/2021 at 19:39, Tomatobro said:

Having seen what others have captured here is one taken with a MN180. I always thought it was a wind gust trail but it does now seen that I captured it

M87_Jet.jpg

Your image is very similar to the one I submitted a few days ago. I was brought down to Earth when Kirkster 501 suggested that it's probably not the jet but 2 distant galaxies in the background. I didn't know about these galaxies up till then but they are there. 

The orientation of the appendage on your and my images resemble a favourite picture of mine from a old book that I've had for nearly 50 years- Dr HC Kings Book Of Astronomy. I am confused now whether I really did image the jet.

DHCKBOAM87.JPG

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I'm currently capturing 120 sec subs of M87 using the 10" Newt and ASI178MC camera.

The "jet" is clear insingle subs. Here is the current live stack in ASTAP. Yeah, ignore the stars on the right side. The angle grinder slipped while I was collimating... :)

This 21 x 120 sec in to the run. 

image.thumb.png.8dcf102023f7a350bbf15eb7a59aaddf.png

I think it is the Jet, the galaxies mentioned above are, I think, the two faint smudges further out beyond the halo at about 8 O'Clock in my image.

There are also 2 asteroids in this frame at about mag 18.1. I've located one of them I think, found a faint trail in the right spot with extreme stretch, nearly lost by stacking method. The other is in the halo.

If this lot stacks nicely I'll post an updated image tomorrow. If... :)

Now, off to 3C 273 :)

 

 

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The fact this can be captured by amateurs in their back yards is a testament to both how far the technology has come and, the dogged determination of the average stargazer.

Most impressive!

Edited by Sunshine
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9 hours ago, Paul M said:

I'm currently capturing 120 sec subs of M87 using the 10" Newt and ASI178MC camera.

The "jet" is clear insingle subs. Here is the current live stack in ASTAP. Yeah, ignore the stars on the right side. The angle grinder slipped while I was collimating... :)

This 21 x 120 sec in to the run. 

image.thumb.png.8dcf102023f7a350bbf15eb7a59aaddf.png

I think it is the Jet, the galaxies mentioned above are, I think, the two faint smudges further out beyond the halo at about 8 O'Clock in my image.

There are also 2 asteroids in this frame at about mag 18.1. I've located one of them I think, found a faint trail in the right spot with extreme stretch, nearly lost by stacking method. The other is in the halo.

If this lot stacks nicely I'll post an updated image tomorrow. If... :)

Now, off to 3C 273 :)

 

 

I don’t think the short sub approach will work on the 3C 273 jet, it appears to be separated from the core of the galaxy which is also less diffuse than M87, and then there is the remoteness to deal with. 
It’s going to be my next target now it’s at the optimum elevation.

Best of luck!👍

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7 minutes ago, tomato said:

I don’t think the short sub approach will work on the 3C 273 jet, it appears to be separated from the core of the galaxy which is also less diffuse than M87, and then there is the remoteness to deal with. 
It’s going to be my next target now it’s at the optimum elevation.

Best of luck!👍

Yup, I started with 300 sec subs and sub no.2 was washed out. Sub no.3 was useless.

Clouds, clouds and more clouds. So that was the end of that! One single sub...

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Not to be left out :) here’s my attempt taken in 2016 of M87 and Markovian Chain.  The trick to reveal the jet in my data was not to over stretch, which is what the insert shows. 
 

4A493E4E-7B31-4311-BEB0-86C6F7DAC80E.png

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Depending on sky and camera, ccd or low noise cmos, you need long exposures (my guess, 15 minutes or more for ccd) or 5 minutes for cmos. But you will need lots of them. The 3C273 jet is much fainter than the one in M87. There’s hardly any risk for over exposing it. My experience with faint galaxies is that you can never have too much data. Diminishing returns is just a fable in this situation.

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5 minutes ago, wimvb said:

Depending on sky and camera, ccd or low noise cmos, you need long exposures (my guess, 15 minutes or more for ccd) or 5 minutes for cmos. But you will need lots of them. The 3C273 jet is much fainter than the one in M87. There’s hardly any risk for over exposing it. My experience with faint galaxies is that you can never have too much data. Diminishing returns is just a fable in this situation.

Totally agree, I’ve got an hour on 3C 273 so far and there is no sign of the jet.

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Here's another one through an Esprit150 with an SX46 from a couple of years ago...  on the left lightly stretched 9x1200s lum and on the right an even more lightly stretched single sub at 800%..  like others I was surprised to see it..  

Good luck with 3C-273 Steve!

Dave

M87_Jet.thumb.jpg.7801bc5e3ae9c9940abe3b47db29b3bb.jpg

 

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