Messier 89 or M89 (also designated NGC 4552) is a elliptical galaxy in the constellation Virgo. It has an apparent visual magnitude of 9.8 and its angular diameter is 4 arc-minutes. M89 lies at an estimated distance of 60 million light years. The Equinox 2000 coordinates are RA= 12h 35.7m, Dec= +12° 33´ which makes M89 best seen during the spring. The Messier Spring Star Chart shows the position of all Messier objects visible during that season.
This elliptical galaxy was discovered by Messier in 1781 and is a member of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies. According to Stoyan et al. (2010), the distance of M89 is 49.6 million light years and its diameter is 74,000 light years.
Messier's Description of M89
March 18, 1781
`Nebula without star, in Virgo, a little of distance from and on the same parallel as the nebula reported above, No. 87. Its light was extremely faint and pale, and and it is not without difficulty that one can distinguish it.'
- Object: M89
- Other Names: NGC 4552
- Object Type: elliptical galaxy
- Object Data: Apparent Magnitude = 9.8, Angular Size = 4 arc-minutes
- Object Position (Equinox 2000): RA= 12h 35.7m, Dec= +12° 33´, Constellation = Virgo
- Date/Time: 2011 Apr 23 at 04:52 UTC
- Location: Bifrost Astronomical Observatory, Portal, AZ
- Mount: Astro-Physics 1200GTO
- Telescope: Takahashi Epsilon 180 Hyperbolic Astrograph
- Camera: Canon EOS 550D (Rebel T2i) (modified with a Baader UV/IR filter)
- Field of View: 1.70° x 2.56° at 1.7 arc-sec/pixel (web version: 10.0 arc-sec/pixel)
- Exposure: 4 x 300s, f/2.8, ISO 800
- File Name: M89M90M87-01w.jpg
- Processing (Adobe Camera Raw): Graduated Filter, Vignetting Correction, Noise Reduction, White Balance, Curves
- Processing (Photoshop CS5): Average Images, Curves, Noise Reduction
- Original Image Size: 3454 × 5179 pixels (17.9 MP); 11.5" x 17.3" @ 300 dpi
- Rights: Copyright 2011 by Fred Espenak. All Rights Reserved. See: Image Licensing.