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NGC 1399
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Evidence from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Magellan telescopes suggest a star has been torn apart by an intermediate-mass black hole in a globular cluster. In this image, X-rays from Chandra are shown in blue and are overlaid on an optical image from the Hubble Space Telescope. The Chandra observations show that this object is a so-called ultraluminous X-ray source (ULX). An unusual class of objects, ULXs emit more X-rays than any known stellar X-ray source, but less than the bright X-ray sources associated with supermassive black holes in the centers of galaxies. Their exact nature has remained a mystery, but one suggestion is that some ULXs are black holes with masses between about a hundred and a thousands times that of the Sun.
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Position (2000): RA 03h 38m 29.00s, Dec -35 27' 01.40

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At a distance of approximately 60 million light-years, the Fornax Cluster is the second richest cluster of galaxies within 100 million light-years, although it is much smaller than the Virgo Cluster. It lies primarily in the constellation Fornax, and may be associated with the nearby Eridanus Group.

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Title: Compact Stellar Systems around NGC 1399
Authors: P. Firth, M.J. Drinkwater, E.A. Evstigneeva, M.D. Gregg, A. Karick, J.B. Jones, S. Phillipps

We have obtained spectroscopic redshifts of colour-selected point sources in four wide area VLT-FLAMES fields around the Fornax Cluster giant elliptical galaxy NGC 1399, identifying as cluster members 30 previously unknown faint (-10.5<M_g'<-8.8) compact stellar systems (CSS), and improving redshift accuracy for 23 previously catalogued CSS.
By amalgamating our results with CSS from previous 2dF observations and excluding CSS dynamically associated with prominent (non-dwarf) galaxies surrounding NGC 1399, we have isolated 80 'unbound' systems that are either part of NGC 1399's globular cluster (GC) system or intracluster GCs. For these unbound systems, we find (i) they are mostly located off the main stellar locus in colour-colour space; (ii) their projected distribution about NGC 1399 is anisotropic, following the Fornax Cluster galaxy distribution, and there is weak evidence for group rotation about NGC 1399; (iii) their completeness-adjusted radial surface density profile has a slope similar to that of NGC 1399's inner GC system; (iv) their mean heliocentric recessional velocity is between that of NGC 1399's inner GCs and that of the surrounding dwarf galaxies, but their velocity dispersion is significantly lower; (v) bright CSS (M_V<-11) are slightly redder than the fainter systems, suggesting they have higher metallicity; (vi) CSS show no significant trend in g' - i' colour index with radial distance from NGC 1399.

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NGHC1399CSS

CSS surrounding NGC 1399.

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