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The Local Group of Galaxies

Introduction

The local Group is a collection of galaxies that surround or are associated gravationally to the Milky Way.

The group contains various sizes's of Galaxies, from super giant Sprial's to Dwarf elipticals.
Over 30 galaxies are members the local group. Some of these galaxies include M31, M33, the LMC and SMC.

The galaxies are scattered across the entire sky. There is usually several members of the group visible to observers all year round. They lie in both hemispheres so northern and southern observers have a chance to observe.

Most of the galaxies that form the local group are very faint so patience and a dark sky are required to observe these galaxies at their best.

Purpose of this document

Today, the ability of the average backyard observer to gain access to sophisticated observing equipment has created exciting new possibilities for amateur astronomy. Innovations such as large aperture Dobsonian telescopes and moderately priced, yet highly sensitive CCD cameras, allow many amateurs to look for objects that are beyond those listed in the standard popular catalogs such as the NGC.

The Internet now gives amateurs the ability to search many of the professional astronomy archives for lesser known, yet exciting, objects to attempt to observe. Many web sites now provide digests of this information in a form more suitable to the average amateur.

In creating this site I have used many references and I will attempt to cite them whenever possible. There is no definitive guide to the Local Group and even this site is only a beginning to the wealth of interesting objects found within it.

You will find here information regarding the history and science of the group, along with contributed observations which also contains a complete list of galaxies known to be members of the Local Group.

It is my hope that this web site will, over time, improve and grow. To this end, I call upon fellow observers to contribute to it, either in the form of your own personal observations or in other constructive feedback.

A page this size requires many acknowledgements which are to numerous to list here.

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