The Andromeda Galaxy has been observed for over a thousand years. Iranian astronomer Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi was the first to record observations of a “small cloud” in the year 964. However, it wasn’t until fairly recently, about a hundred years ago, that we understood it was a separate galaxy, 2.5 million light years away. In about 4 billion years, it is expected to collide with the Milky Way, and eventually the two will merge.
The Andromeda Galaxy was the first target I attempted when I was getting set up with my gear. In November, I collected a bunch of images over a couple nights. I revisited M31 in December to collect more data and give another go at processing it. All in all, this shot contains about 2.4 hours worth of images.
Compare this with my blank and white mosaic from my attempt in 2007. One advantage of not having a giant telescope is that it’s easier to take widefield shots of large objects like M31.