A 10 minute exposure taken with ST-9E CCD camera in June 2001.
Quote from Burnham's Celestial Handbook:
"This is the well known "Dark Lane" or "Sombrero" galaxy, discovered by P. Mechain in May 1781, and added by Messier to his copy of the Connaissance des Tenps (1784); consequently it has been added in many modern observing guides to the original Messier list, and given the number M-104".
M-104 (NGC 4594) is probably a part of the Coma/Virgo galaxy cluster. It has a bright bulging main mass with a nearly stellar nucleus, and a well defined dark lane traversing the equatorial plane. The dimmer fuzzy "stars" near M-104 in the Koopernik image above are probably some the galaxy's globular star clusters. The Sombrero galaxy has in its nucleus both a very compact and strong nonthermal radio source and a strong X-ray source. It belongs to the class of galaxies with active nuclei known as Seyfert galaxies. (see also M-77)
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George Normandin, KAS
June 30th, 2001