Messier 60 is one of the bright, giant elliptical galaxies in the Virgo Cluster. This object is approximately 120,000 light years in diameter along its greatest dimension, although only a bit more than half of this can be seen in amateur telescopes because of the large brightness difference between its central region and its fainter outer portions. It lies in a part of the Virgo Cluster where other galaxies can be seen in the same field of view under lower magnifications. At a visual magnitude of about 8.8, it shines with the luminosity of about 60 billion suns and current evidence indicates that it is host to a massive central black hole of about 2 billion solar masses. M60 is surrounded by a system of over 5,000 globular cluster satellites. A supernova was seen in 2004.
The other galaxy just to the upper left in my photo is NGC 4647, a spiral of undetermined distance. Although the outer portions of the two galaxies overlap in long exposure photos, there is no evidence of any gravitational interaction, indicating that NGC 4647 lies at some distance closer or farther than its much brighter neighbor.

Taken March 20, 2012, with the C-14 operating at F:3.5 and the ST-8 camera binned 2 X 2. Exposure is 2 minutes.