M58 is one of the many Spring galaxies that can be found nestled within the constellation Virgo. At magnitude 9.7, you’ll need a telescope to spot it and like many of its kind, the fun lies not observing it, but in tracking it down in the first place.
Discovered by Charles Messier in 1779, the galaxy lies an estimated 68 million light years away and its light has therefore taken that long to reach the Earth. If you’re lucky enough to observe this faint citadel of stars, remember that you’re seeing it as it was when the dinosaurs ruled the Earth!
(Click on an image to enlarge.)
The barred spiral galaxy M58 culminates at midnight tonight. (Magnitude 9.7. Virgo, all night.)
Events in bold involve objects and/or events that are easily visible with the naked eye.
All times are in Universal Time (UTC). To convert the time to your timezone, click here.
Learn more about upcoming astronomical events in 2015 An Astronomical Year (Kindle Edition) and The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) (Kindle Edition and Paperback Edition) and 2016 An Astronomical Year (North American Kindle Edition.)
The Amateur Astronomer’s Notebook allows astronomers to log 150 observing sessions and includes an appendix of hundreds of suggested deep sky objects.
If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to contact me at astronomywriter “at” gmail.com