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Anne’s Image of the Day: The Whale Galaxy

23 Apr 2014, 11:59 UTC
Anne’s Image of the Day: The Whale Galaxy
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April 23, 2014 NGC 4631, a barred spiral galaxy in Canes Venatici Image Credit & Copyright: Dieter Beer & Patrick Hochleitner NGC 4631 (also known as the Whale Galaxy) is an edge-on, barred spiral galaxy of about 140,000 light-years across that lies some 30 million light-years away from Earth in the small northern constellation of Canes [continue reading]

April 23, 2014
NGC 4631, a barred spiral galaxy in Canes Venatici

Image Credit & Copyright: Dieter Beer & Patrick Hochleitner
NGC 4631 (also known as the Whale Galaxy) is an edge-on, barred spiral galaxy of about 140,000 light-years across that lies some 30 million light-years away from Earth in the small northern constellation of Canes Venatici (the Hunting Dogs), while it is receding from us at approximately 606 kilometers per second. This galaxy’s slightly distorted wedge shape gives it the appearance of a whale, hence its nickname.
This galaxy has a nearby companion, named NGC 4627, a dwarf elliptical galaxy which lies just above it. Together also called Arp 281, this interacting galaxy pair was listed in the Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies as an example of a “double galaxy”. Arp’s Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies is a catalog of 338 peculiar galaxies ...

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