M81 "Bode galaxy" and M82 "Cigar galaxy"

Object Information:

M81 and M82 are a typical target for amateur astrophotographers due to it's quite big apparent size and amazing details that they can offer.

Messier 81 is located approximately 10° northwest of Alpha Ursae Majoris along with several other galaxies in the Messier 81 Group. Messier 81 and Messier 82 can both be viewed easily using binoculars and small telescopes. The two objects are generally not observable to the unaided eye, although highly experienced amateur astronomers may be able to see Messier 81 under exceptional observing conditions with a very dark sky. Telescopes with apertures of 8 inches (20 cm) or larger, like the one used to take this image, are needed to distinguish structures in the galaxy. Its far northern declination makes it generally visible for observers in the northern hemisphere. It is not visible to most observers in the southern hemisphere, except those in a narrow latitude range immediately south of the equator.

Messier 81 is the largest galaxy in the M81 Group, a group of 34 galaxies located in the constellation Ursa Major. At approximately 11.7 Mly (3.6 Mpc) from the Earth, it makes this group and the Local Group, containing the Milky Way, relative neighbors in the Virgo Supercluster.

Gravitational interactions of M81 with M82 and NGC 3077 have stripped hydrogen gas away from all three galaxies, forming gaseous filamentary structures in the group. Moreover, these interactions have allowed interstellar gas to fall into the centers of M82 and NGC 3077, leading to vigorous star formation or starburst activity there.

Detail of M81 (click to enlarge):

Detail of M82 (click to enlarge):

More information here.

Processing: the processing of this image has been done by Josep M. Drudis and Aleix Roig. The main part of it by Josep M. using PS and PIX. The last part by Aleix using PIX and ST.

Exposure Information: 9h40 minutes exposure

Lights: 38x900" 1600ISO + 20x30" 1600ISO
Darks: 19
Flats: 30
Bias: 50

Temperature 10ºC
Moon phase 0%

Note: My last image with the current setup (Canon 450D, Newton 200/1000, Neq6proII)
Imaged at: Prades, Tarragona, CATALUNYA - SPAIN

Optics - GSO- 200/1000 Newtonian f/5
Camera - Canon 450D moded (IR filter removed)
Mount - Sky-Watcher Neq6 PROII
Guiding scope – EZG 60/230
Guiding and planetary camera – ASI 174MC

Software: APT, PHD2, DSS, PIX, Star Tools (ST)

Image date: December 28th, 29th and 30th, 2016