NGC 4088 --Spiral Galaxy in Ursa Major
Broken Arm Galaxy
The Spiral Galaxy NGC 4088 was not at all spectacular in the eyepiece of the 155mm
refractor from my suburban backyard.  No hint of it magnificent two spiral arms could be
coaxed out.  Even its core was not all that distinct from the rest of the galaxy.  My view just
did not do this galaxy justice. In professional telescopes, NGC 4088, is known for having
one of its spiral arms looking disconnected.  When Halten Arp put together his famous
“Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies” he included NGC 4088 in his section of “Galaxies with
Detached Segments”.  Several years ago, when using the 18-inch Dobsonian telescope
at a far darker site, I still failed to see the disconnected arm, so I was not expecting the
much smaller refractor to actually show it to me – but just can’t help but look for it anyway.