Catalogue and alternative designations

M87, NGC 4486, Virgo A

Type Elliptical Galaxy
Position 12 30.8, 12 24
Constellation Virgo
Camera and Telescope STL6303E and 31.75 cm Ritchey Chretien
Focal Ratio F9
Exposure Details LRGB 70:30:30:30 all 2x2 with Astrodon series 2 filters
Description Every statistic about this giant galaxy is impressive and at magnitude 9.59 it's an easy although relatively featureless visual object.  The angular size is 7.2 x 6.8' and it's about 54 million light years distant.  M87 is almost 500,000 light years in diameter and has about 12,000 globular clusters.  The famous jet, which can be seen in this image, emanates from the central black hole which has an estimated 6.6 billion solar masses.