The Spindle Galaxy (NGC 3115)
The Spindle Galaxy is a bright lenticular S0 type galaxy located about 32 million light years away in the constellation Sextans.
The galaxy has a unique and interesting appearance, being very bright but largely featureless with no dark dust band or clouds present at all. It is visible in binoculars and is an impressive object visually even in a medium-sized telescope.
The galaxy is seen edge-on from our viewpoint and shows no hint of structure other than a very bright core surrounded by a central bulge and perhaps a slight hint of detail in the flat extended disk.
The galaxy is clearly composed solely of old red stars, having exhausted its supply of gas and dust. In recent years a supermassive black hole of up to 2 billion solar masses has been confirmed to reside in its centre, making it the nearest galaxy with a billion-solar-mass black hole.
Date: 24th and 26th February 2017
Exposure: LRGB: 120:50:45:45 mins, total 4 hours 20 mins @ -25C
Telescope: Homebuilt 12.5" f/4 Serrurier Truss Newtonian
Camera: QSI 683wsg with Lodestar guider
Filters: Astrodon LRGB E-Series Gen 2
Taken from my observatory in Auckland, New Zealand