Sunflower Galaxy

Sunflower Galaxy

Messier 63
M63 from GALEX sky survey
Observation data (J2000 epoch)
Constellation Canes Venatici
Right ascension 13h 15m 49.3s[1]
Declination +42° 01′ 45″[1]
Redshift 484 km/s[1]
Distance 37 Mly[2]
Type SA(rs)bc[1]
Apparent dimensions (V) 12′.6 × 7′.2[1]
Apparent magnitude (V) 9.3[1]
Other designations
M63, NGC 5055, UGC 8334, PGC 46153[1]

Messier 63 (also known as M63, NGC 5055, or the Sunflower Galaxy) is a spiral galaxy in the constellation Canes Venatici consisting of a central disc surrounded by many short spiral arm segments. M63 is part of the M51 Group, a group of galaxies that also includes M51 (the 'Whirlpool Galaxy').


  • History 1
  • Gallery 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4


M63 was discovered by Pierre Méchain on June 14, 1779.[3] The galaxy was then listed by Charles Messier as object 63 in the Messier Catalogue.

In the mid-19th century, Lord Rosse identified spiral structures within the galaxy, making this one of the first galaxies in which such structure was identified.[3]

In 1971, a supernova with a magnitude of 11.8 appeared in one of the arms of M63.



  1. ^ a b c d e f g "NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database". Results for NGC 5055. Retrieved 2006-10-10. 
  2. ^ Frommert, Hartmut & Kronberg, Christine (2002). "Messier Object 63". Retrieved Dec. 6, 2006
  3. ^ a b K. G. Jones (1991). Messier's Nebulae and Star Clusters (2nd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.  
  4. ^ "A galactic sunflower". Retrieved 8 September 2015. 

External links

  • The Sunflower Galaxy on WikiSky: DSS2, SDSS, GALEX, IRAS, Hydrogen α, X-Ray, Astrophoto, Sky Map, Articles and images
  • Sunflower Galaxy @ SEDS Messier pages
  • Sunflower Galaxy (M63) at Constellation Guide