The unstoppable Fireworks Galaxy and the supernova SN 2017eaw


Lionel Majzik

Tápióbicske, Pest, Hungary

Nikon D3300
Sky-Watcher 150/750 mm Newtonian telescope
Total exposure time: 6 hours

The supernova SN 2017eaw was detected on May 14, 2017 in the Fireworks Galaxy (NGC 6946), 22 million light-years away. The galaxy is located at the edge of the Cepheus and Cygnus constellations. The galaxy received its name (“Fireworksâ€) from the frequent supernova-explosions. The supernova is the nearest to the galaxy’s core among the four bright stars in the main spiral arm, on the right side of the galaxy. At the time when the photograph was taken, the supernova was around 13.1 magnitude. On the upper right part of the picture, you can see the NGC 6939 open cluster as well. I only managed to take the photograph at a moderately light-pollutied area; what is more, the atmospheric opacity was not really satisfactory either. The photograph was made in three nights. 10 days passed from the very first and the very last exposition. It is my pleasure that I managed to capture an “actual†astronomical event – which in reality happened 22 million years ago.