35 Comae Berenicis and M64

This sparse field of view—binoculars—has one fine binary and a spectacular spiral galaxy.

35 Comae Berenicis is a multiple system (Struve 1687):
      AB: 5.2, 7.1; 194º, 1.2" with an orbit of 359 years.
      AC: 5.2, 9.7; 128º, 29.1", a real test for larger binoculars.

About one degree east-northeast of 35 Comae is M64, usually called the Black Eye Galaxy, but also known as the Evil Eye Galaxy for its dark dust band covering a portion of its nucleus. This spiral galaxy has an apparent magnitude of 9.4, and is 19 million light years away.

While it can be found with a good pair of binoculars, it takes at least a small telescope to begin enjoying its fascinating features.

Now move one binocular field northwest for the 'Coma Star Cluster'. Click on gamma Com on the map for details.

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© 1999-2014 by Richard Dibon-Smith.