Astronomy – Faulkes Telescopes
Year 12 pupils Jack Williams and Lance Jackson have been using the 2 metre Faulkes Telescopes (robotic telescopes) based in Hawaii and Australia to image Deep Sky Objects. The image to the left is of M101 the Pinwheel Galaxy, (also known as Messier 101 or NGC 5457) and is a face-on spiral galaxy distanced 21 million light-years away in the constellation Ursa Major.
The second image is of The Whirlpool Galaxy (also known as M51a or NGC
5194), which is an interacting spiral galaxy that is estimated to be 23 ± 4 million light-years from the Milky Way Galaxy in the constellation Canes Venatici. The galaxy and its companion (NGC 5195) are easily observed by amateur astronomers, and the two galaxies may even be seen with binoculars under dark skies.
Any pupils who may be interested in booking the Faulkes Telescope to image their own Deep Sky Objects should ask Dr.Humberstone.