Messier 49 (M 49)

Introduction | Map | My Own Photos | My Own Observations | References

On this page I collect my observations of the elliptical galaxy M 49 (NGC 4472) in the constellation Virgo.



M 49 in the constellation Virgo is the brightest galaxy of the Virgo galaxy cluster and a large luminous galaxy: it is a giant elliptical galaxy with a bright compact nucleus and a wide diffuse halo

I have only visited and found M 49 once visually, and a second time with the eVscope. The eVscope photo also shows the spiral galaxy NGC 4470 (as well as some small and even fainter galaxies; see evaluation).

Together with the irregular galaxy UGC 7636 (not visible on the photo), M 49 forms an entry in the Arp catalog (Arp 134).

From Deep*Sky Corner

M 49 is an elliptical Seyfert 2 galaxy of the morphological type E2, contains around 200 billion mostly old stars. The last stars formed here about six billion years ago - before the birth of our sun. The diameter is 157'000 light years. The measured distances range from 16.8 Mpc to 19.28 Mpc (approximately 55 to 63 million light years). A supermassive black hole with about 500 million solar masses is up to mischief in the extremely active core and is a powerful source of X-rays. M 49 is also rich in globular clusters. About 6000 were counted here. The Milky Way has just 150 of them. The average age of globular clusters is around 10 billion years.

M 49 (NGC 4472)      NGC 4470   UGC 7636
Size: 5' (Stoyan)
Distance: 60 million light years (Stoyan)
Rating: ** (Stoyan)
  Size: 1.3' x 0.9 ' (SkySafari)
Distance: 101 million light years (Wikipedia)
Rating: ---
     Size: 1.0' x 0.7 ' (SkySafari)
Distance: 28 million light years (SkySafari)
Rating: ---



The elliptical galaxy M 49 in the constellation Virgo (in the Virgo galaxy cluster) plus the galaxy M 87 (higher up) (Image Courtesy of SkySafari Astronomy,

Overview of the Virgo galaxy cluster, M 49 is located to the bottom right (Image Courtesy of SkySafari Astronomy,

M 49 and some smaller galaxies in its neighborhood (Image Courtesy of SkySafari Astronomy, At the lower edge of the ring around M 49 there is the irregular galaxy UGC 7636, which together with M 49 forms the Arp 134 group.


My Own Photos



M 49 - Mar 24, 2020


M 49 - Mar 24, 2020, processed


M 49 - Mar 24, 2020, processed (NGC 4470 marked at the bottom right)

    Further galaxies: IC 3417, NGC 4466, NGC 4470, NGC 4471, NGC 4464, NGC 4465, NGC 4467  

Evaluation with


My Own Observations

Observations May 2017

Observations March 2020



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