M 81 (NGC 3031) Galaxy in Ursa Major

Located at: RA 09 hours 55 minutes 36 seconds, Dec +69 degrees 03 minutes 49 seconds

Size: 27.1' x 14.2' Magnitude: 7.9 blue Class: SA(s)ab

North is up

West to the right


 8" f5 Newtonian reflector


 ST-8XME, self-guided, binned 1x1, temp -20c, camera control MaxIm DL 4.56


Lumicon Red filter, 900 minutes (90 x 10 minute subs), 02/11/12/21/22/2011; seeing 21.8-3.6 FWHM per CCDStack


CCDStack 2.18.4064.25204, Photoshop 7.0


 Rolling Roof Observatory, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360 (+34d 13m 29s -118h 52m 20s)


I wanted to more than double my first image (360 minutes) with the Deep Sky filter. See here for my 14.5" f5 Newtonian hypered Kodak Tech Pan film image. See the 14.5" ccd version.

M 81 is located about 37 minutes south of M 82.

From the NGC / IC Project:

Contemporary Visual Observation(s) for NGC 3031

NGC 3031 = M81 = U05318 = MCG +12-10-010 = CGCG 333-007 = Bode's Nebula = PGC 
09 55 33.2 +69 03 55
V = 6.9;  Size 26.9x14.1;  SB = 13.2;  PA = 157d

17.5": very bright, very large, elongated 2:1 NNW-SSE, about 16'x8', large oval 
bright middle, bright core, nearly stellar nucleus.  Two mag 11.5 and 11.9 stars 
are superimposed in the halo at the south edge of the core.  An easily visible 
spiral arm is attached near these two stars at the S end of the core.  This arm 
curves due N along the E side and is well separated from the main body.  A 
second arm is suspected as a short extension curving around the NNW end towards 
a mag 12 star at the WNW edge of the halo.  Mag 8.7 SAO 15020 (?1386 = 9.3/9.3 
at 2") lies 10' SSW and the striking double star ?1387 = 10.7/10.7 at 9" is 8' 
SSW.  Forms a very striking pair at low power with M82 37' N.  The bright 
supernova 1993j was located 3' SSW of the core and formed a right triangle with 
the two mag 11.5/11.9 stars south of the core.

13": extremely faint arm attached at the SE end near two stars and curves to the 

8": very bright, bright core, large oval halo, elongated NW-SE, two faint stars 

- by Steve Gottlieb