NGC 4449

Alt. Designations: NGC 4449
Object Type: irregular galaxy
Constellation: Canes Venatici
Distance: 12.5 mly
Right Ascension: 12h 28m 11.3s
Declination: +44° 05´ 42"
Visual Magnitude: 9.4
Apparent Dimension: 6.2´ X 4.4´
Best Month To View: Apr

NGC 4449 is an irregular dwarf galaxy that is part of the Canes Venaticorum group of galaxies some 12 million light years away. This galaxy is very similar to the Large Magellanic Cloud in both structure and size. The central part of the galaxy consists of a population of very young stars which extend through the galaxy in a bar formation. Astronomers estimate that these stars are not much older than 5 million years in age. The numerous red regions are the HII regions that are currently forming stars. Massive dark clouds of gas and dust (dark blobs in picture) await future episodes of star formation. Chains of blue outline the baby-boom of stars in this galaxy.