M96 - Spiral Galaxy in Leo

M96 is the largest of the galaxies in the Leo I group. It is a fine example of a face-on spiral galaxy. Visible through the spiral arm in the upper left section is a very distant edge-on galaxy.
   
Telescope: AstroTech 8in. R-C
Camera: Canon XS (Hutech modified); ISO 1600; Raw mode
Mount: Losmandy G11 w/Gemini
Guiding: SSAG on 500mm guide scope
Exposures:

30 @ 5 min.

Processing:

Images were focused using Live View. They were calibrated, aligned, and combined in ImagesPlus. The final image was adjusted in Photoshop CS2 (Curves, slight cropping). Noise was reduced by applying Gaussian blur throough a layer mask.
Shot from by backyard observatory in southeastern Minnesota on 3/6/10. Temp: 20F Humidity 60% Seeing: moderate

   
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