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M63/Sunflower Galaxy

The M63/Sunflower galaxy is a spiral galaxy in the constellation of Canes Venatici.

The M63/Sunflower galaxy is also known as NGC 5055. The galaxy was verified discovered in 1773 by Charles Messier, although previously discovered by a fellow astronomer and colleague of Charles Messier.  

Like the Whirlpool galaxy, the M63/Sunflower galaxy was one of the first spiral galaxies to be discovered.

The galaxy is part of the M51 group of galaxies, with the M standing for Messier, after it’s discoverer. The M in the M63 also stands for Messier.

M63/Sunflower galaxy is quite a compact galaxy within it’s structure, and while it has spiral arm features, they are not widely noticeable until the galaxy is studied in further depth. Hence the name Sunflower galaxy, as the spiral galaxy resembles a Sunflower.  


Key Data

Size: Diameter of 98,000 light years.

Star Population: 400 billion.

Distance from Earth: 37 million light years.

Galaxy Type: Spiral.

Constellation: Canes Venatici.


Kids Fun Facts Corner

# 1. The M63/Sunflower galaxy was discovered in 1773.

# 2. The M63/Sunflower galaxy sits between galaxies M51 & M94 in the constellation of Canes Venatici.

# 3. The M63/Sunflower galaxy is a spiral galaxy.


Q&A Corner

Q. In what year was the M63/Sunflower galaxy discovered?

Q. What size is the M63/Sunflower galaxy?

Q. What type of galaxy is the M63/Sunflower galaxy?

Q. What constellation is the M63/Sunflower galaxy in? 

Q. How many stars are in the M63/Sunflower galaxy?

Download questions about the M63/Sunflower galaxy here: M63 Sunflower galaxy (answer are on this page)

For further reading and more information on the M63/Sunflower galaxy visit

Key Vocabulary Galaxy. Constellation. Sunflower . Spiral. Light Years. 


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