Messier 65

Messier 65 (also known as NGC 3623) is an intermediate spiral galaxy about 35 million light-years away in the constellation Leo. It was discovered by Charles Messier in 1780. Along with M66 and NGC 3628, M65 forms the Leo Triplet, a small group of galaxies.

Messier 65
Messier 65 through the years
M65 by Hubble.[1]
Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA
Observation data
Epoch J2000
Constellation Leo
Right ascension  11h 18m 55.9s[2]
Declination +13° 05′ 32″[2]
Apparent dimension (V) 8.709 × 2.454 moa[3]
Apparent magnitude (V)10.25[2]
TypeSAB(rs)a,[2] LINER[2]
Heliocentric radial velocity 807 ± 3[2] km/s
Redshift 0.002692 ± 0.000010[2]
Galactocentric velocity 723 ± 5[2] km/s
Other designations
NGC 3623,[2] UGC 6328,[2] PGC 34612[2]
Database references
SIMBAD Search M65 data
See also: Galaxy, List of galaxies


M65 was discovered by Charles Messier and included in his Messier Objects list. However, William Henry Smyth accidentally attributed the discovery to Pierre Méchain in his popular 19th century astronomical work A Cycle of Celestial Objects (stating "They [M65 and M66] were pointed out by Méchain to Messier in 1780"). This error was in turn picked up by Kenneth Glyn Jones in Messier's Nebulae and Star Clusters. This has since ramified into a number of other books by a variety of authors.

Star formation

The galaxy is low in dust and gas, and there is little star formation in it, although there has been some relatively recently in the arms. The ratio of old stars to new stars is correspondingly quite high. In most wavelengths it is quite uninteresting, though there is a radio source visible in the NVSS, offset from the core by about two arc-minutes. The identity of the source is uncertain, as it has not been identified visually, or formally studied in any published papers.[4]

The Leo Triplet, with M65 at the upper right, M66 at the lower right, and NGC 3628 at the upper left. Credit: Scott Anttila.

Interaction with other galaxies

To the eye, M65's disk appears slightly warped, and its relatively recent burst of star formation is also suggestive of some external disturbance. Rots (1978) suggests that the two other galaxies in the Leo Triplet interacted with each other about 800 million years ago. Recent research by Zhiyu Duan suggests that M65 may also have interacted, though much less strongly. He also notes that M65 may have a central bar—it is difficult to tell because the galaxy is seen from an oblique angle—a feature which is suggestive of tidal disruption.[5]


  1. ^ "Messier 65 through the years". ESA/Hubble Picture of the Week. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "NED results for object MESSIER 065". NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database. Retrieved 2006-10-21.
  3. ^ "M 65". SIMBAD. Centre de données astronomiques de Strasbourg. Retrieved 2008-07-09.
  4. ^ "Multiwavelength Messier 65".
  5. ^ Zhiyu Duan (2006). "Multicolor Photometry and Stellar Population Synthesis Study of the Interacting Galaxies of the Leo Triplet". Astronomical Journal. 132 (4): 1581–1592. Bibcode:2006AJ....132.1581D. doi:10.1086/507304.

External links

Coordinates: Sky map 11h 18m 55.9s, +13° 05′ 32″

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Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies

The Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies is a catalog of peculiar galaxies produced by Halton Arp in 1966. A total of 338 galaxies are presented in the atlas, which was originally published in 1966 by the California Institute of Technology. The primary goal of the catalog was to present photographs of examples of the different kinds of peculiar structures found among galaxies.

Intermediate spiral galaxy

An intermediate spiral galaxy is a galaxy that is in between the classifications of a barred spiral galaxy and an unbarred spiral galaxy. It is designated as SAB in the galaxy morphological classification system devised by Gerard de Vaucouleurs. Subtypes are labeled as SAB0, SABa, SABb, or SABc, following a sequence analogous to the Hubble sequence for barred and unbarred spirals. The subtype (0, a, b, or c) is based on the relative prominence of the central bulge and how tightly wound the spiral arms are.

Leo (constellation)

Leo is one of the constellations of the zodiac, lying between Cancer the crab to the west and Virgo the maiden to the east. Its name is Latin for lion, and to the ancient Greeks represented the Nemean Lion killed by the mythical Greek hero Heracles meaning 'Glory of Hera' (known to the ancient Romans as Hercules) as one of his twelve labors. Its symbol is (Unicode ♌). One of the 48 constellations described by the 2nd-century astronomer Ptolemy, Leo remains one of the 88 modern constellations today, and one of the most easily recognizable due to its many bright stars and a distinctive shape that is reminiscent of the crouching lion it depicts. The lion's mane and shoulders also form an asterism known as "The Sickle," which to modern observers may resemble a backwards "question mark."

List of NGC objects (3001–4000)

This is a list of NGC objects 3001–4000 from the New General Catalogue (NGC). The astronomical catalogue is composed mainly of star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies. Other objects in the catalogue can be found in the other subpages of the list of NGC objects.

The constellation information in these tables is taken from The Complete New General Catalogue and Index Catalogue of Nebulae and Star Clusters by J. L. E. Dreyer, which was accessed using the "VizieR Service". Galaxy types are identified using the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database. The other data of these tables are from the SIMBAD Astronomical Database unless otherwise stated.

Messier object

The Messier objects are a set of 110 astronomical objects cataloged by the French astronomer Charles Messier in his Catalogue des Nébuleuses et des Amas d'Étoiles ("Catalogue of Nebulae and Star Clusters").

Because Messier was interested in finding only comets, he created a list of non-comet objects that frustrated his hunt for them. The compilation of this list, in collaboration with his assistant Pierre Méchain, is known as the Messier catalogue. This catalogue of objects is one of the most famous lists of astronomical objects, and many Messier objects are still referenced by their Messier number.

The catalogue includes some astronomical objects that can be observed from Earth's Northern Hemisphere such as deep-sky objects, a characteristic which makes the Messier objects extremely popular targets for amateur astronomers.A preliminary version first appeared in the Memoirs of the French Academy of Sciences in 1771,

and the last item was added in 1966 by Kenneth Glyn Jones, based on Messier's observations.

The first version of Messier's catalogue contained 45 objects and was published in 1774 in the journal of the French Academy of Sciences in Paris. In addition to his own discoveries, this version included objects previously observed by other astronomers, with only 17 of the 45 objects being Messier's.

By 1780 the catalogue had increased to 80 objects. The final version of the catalogue containing 103 objects was published in 1781 in the Connaissance des Temps for the year 1784.

However, due to what was thought for a long time to be the incorrect addition of Messier 102, the total number remained 102. Other astronomers, using side notes in Messier's texts, eventually filled out the list up to 110 objects.The catalogue consists of a diverse range of astronomical objects, ranging from star clusters and nebulae to galaxies. For example, Messier 1 is a supernova remnant, known as the Crab Nebula, and the great spiral Andromeda Galaxy is M31. Many further inclusions followed in the next century when the first addition came from Nicolas Camille Flammarion in 1921, who added Messier 104 after finding Messier's side note in his 1781 edition exemplar of the catalogue. M105 to M107 were added by Helen Sawyer Hogg in 1947, M108 and M109 by Owen Gingerich in 1960, and M110 by Kenneth Glyn Jones in 1967.

See also

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