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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 17:20 EDT
Spiral Galaxy Messier 95
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Spiral Galaxy Messier 95

March 14, 2007

M95, also known as Messier 95 or NGC 3351, is a barred spiral galaxy about 38 million light-years away in the constellation Leo. It was discovered by Pierre Méchain in 1781, and catalogued by Charles Messier 4 days later.

M95 is one of several galaxies within the M96 Group, a group of galaxies in the constellation Leo. The group also includes the Messier objects M96 and M105.

The Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) is a non-profit organization which operates a world class 3.6 meter telescope atop Mauna Kea, a dormant Hawaiian volcano rising 4,200 meters above the Pacific ocean. It is funded according to a tripartite agreement between Canada, France and the University of Hawaii signed in June 1974.

CFHT's staff includes experts in a wide variety of fields including mechanics, electronics, computer science, optics and astrophysics. The technical groups are complemented by a library and administrative service. The role of CFHT is to operate, maintain and upgrade all the observatory systems, to make sure that the telescope remains competitive, and to provide first rate instrumentation to astronomers in Canada, France and the University of Hawaii.