Virgo Cluster

The Virgo Cluster is a cluster of galaxies whose center is 53.8 ± 0.3 Mly (16.5 ± 0.1 Mpc)[2] away in the constellation Virgo. Comprising approximately 1300 (and possibly up to 2000) member galaxies,[3] the cluster forms the heart of the larger Virgo Supercluster, of which the Local Group (containing the Milky Way galaxy) is an outlying member. The Local Group actually experiences the mass of the Virgo Supercluster as the Virgocentric flow. It is estimated that the Virgo Cluster's mass is 1.2×1015 M out to 8 degrees of the cluster's center or a radius of about 2.2 Mpc.[4]

Many of the brighter galaxies in this cluster, including the giant elliptical galaxy Messier 87, were discovered in the late 1770s and early 1780s and subsequently included in Charles Messier's catalogue of non-cometary fuzzy objects. Described by Messier as nebulae without stars, their true nature was not recognized until the 1920s.[A]

The cluster subtends a maximum arc of approximately 8 degrees centered in the constellation Virgo. Although some of the cluster's most prominent members can be seen with smaller instruments, a 6 inch telescope will reveal about 160 of the cluster's galaxies on a clear night. Its brightest member is the elliptical galaxy Messier 49; however its most famous member is the elliptical galaxy Messier 87, which is located in the center of the cluster.[6]

Virgo Cluster
ESO-M87
Virgo Cluster showing the diffuse light between member galaxies. Messier 87 is the largest galaxy (lower left).
Observation data (Epoch J2000)
Constellation(s)Virgo & Coma Berenices
Right ascension12h 27m[1]
Declination+12° 43′[1]
Brightest memberMessier 49
Number of galaxies~1500[1]
Bautz-Morgan classificationIII[1]

Characteristics

The cluster is a fairly heterogeneous mixture of spirals and ellipticals.[7] As of 2004, it is believed that the spiral galaxies of the cluster are distributed in an oblong prolate filament, approximately four times as long as it is wide, stretching along the line of sight from the Milky Way.[8] The elliptical galaxies are more centrally concentrated than the spiral galaxies.[9]

The cluster is an aggregrate of at least three separate subclumps: Virgo A, centered on M87, a second centered on the galaxy M86, and Virgo B, centered on M49, with some authors including a Virgo C subcluster, centered on the galaxy M60 as well as a LVC (Low Velocity Cloud) subclump, centered on the large spiral galaxy NGC 4216.[10]

Of all of the subclumps, Virgo A, formed by a mixture of elliptical, lenticular, and (usually) gas-poor spiral galaxies,[11] is the dominant one, with a mass of approximately 1014 M, which is approximately an order of magnitude larger than the other two subclumps.[12]

14-296-GalaxyClusters-PerseusVirgo-ChandraXRay-20141027
Turbulence may prevent galaxy clusters from cooling (Chandra X-ray).

The three subgroups are in the process of merging to form a larger single cluster[12] and are surrounded by other smaller galaxy clouds, mostly composed of spiral galaxies, known as N Cloud, S Cloud, and Virgo E that are in the process of infalling to merge with them,[13] plus other farther isolated galaxies and galaxy groups (like the galaxy cloud Coma I) that are also attracted by the gravity of Virgo to merge with it in the future.[14] This strongly suggests the Virgo cluster is a dynamically young cluster that is still forming.[13]

Other two nearby aggregations known as M Cloud, W Cloud, and W' Cloud[10] seem to be background systems independent of the main cluster.[13]

The large mass of the cluster is indicated by the high peculiar velocities of many of its galaxies, sometimes as high as 1,600 km/s with respect to the cluster's center.

The Virgo cluster lies within the Virgo Supercluster, and its gravitational effect slows down the nearby galaxies. The large mass of the cluster has the effect of slowing down the recession of the Local Group from the cluster by approximately ten percent.

Intracluster medium

As with many other rich galaxy clusters, Virgo's intracluster medium is filled with a hot, rarefied plasma at temperatures of 30 million kelvins that emits X-Rays.[15] Within the intracluster medium (ICM) are found a large number of intergalactic stars[16][17] (up to 10% of the stars in the cluster),[18] including some planetary nebulae.[19] It is theorized that these were expelled from their home galaxies by interactions with other galaxies.[18] The ICM also contains some globular clusters,[20][21][22] possibly stripped off dwarf galaxies,[22] and even at least one star formation region.[23]

Galaxies

Virgo cluster 052012 overlay
Virgo Cluster of galaxies

Below is given a table of bright or notable objects in the Virgo Cluster and the subunit of the cluster in which they are located. Note that in some cases a galaxy may be considered in a different subunit by other researchers (sources:[10][13][24][25])

Column 1: The name of the galaxy.
Column 2: The right ascension for epoch 2000.
Column 3: The declination for epoch 2000.
Column 4: The blue apparent magnitude of the galaxy.
Column 5: The galaxy type: E=Elliptical, S0=Lenticular, Sa,Sb,Sc,Sd=Spiral, SBa,SBb,SBc,SBd=Barred spiral, Sm,SBm,Irr=Irregular.
Column 6: The angular diameter of the galaxy (arcminutes).
Column 7: The diameter of the galaxy (thousands of light years).
Column 8: The recessional velocity (km/s) of the galaxy relative to the cosmic microwave background.
Column 9: Subcluster where the galaxy is located.
Cluster members
Designation Coordinates (Epoch 2000) Apparent
magnitude

(blue)
Type Angular size Diameter
(kly)
RV
(km/s)
Subcluster
RA Dec
Messier 98 12 13.8 14 54 10.9 SBb 9.8′ 150 184 Virgo A or N Cloud
NGC 4216 12 15.9 13 09 10.9 SBb 7.9′ 120 459 Virgo A, N Cloud, or LVC.
Messier 99 12 18.8 14 25 10.4 Sc 5.4′ 80 2735 Virgo A or N Cloud
NGC 4262 12 19.5 14 53 12.4 S0 1.9′ 30 1683 Virgo A
NGC 4388 12 25.5 12 39 11.8 SAb 6.2′ 85 2845 Virgo A
Messier 61 12 21.9 04 28 10.2 SBbc 6.2′ 100 1911 S Cloud
Messier 100 12 22.9 15 49 10.1 SBbc 7.6′ 115 1899 Virgo A
Messier 84 12 25.1 12 53 10.1 E1 6.0′ 90 1239 Virgo A
Messier 85 12 25.4 18 11 10.0 S0 7.1′ 105 1056 Virgo A
Messier 86 12 26.2 12 57 9.9 E3 10.2′ 155 37 Virgo A or own subgroup.
NGC 4435 12 27.7 13 05 11.7 S0 3.0′ 45 1111 Virgo A
NGC 4438 12 27.8 13 01 11.0 Sa 8.7′ 130 404 Virgo A
NGC 4450 12 28.5 17 05 10.9 Sab 5.1′ 80 2273 Virgo A
Messier 49 12 29.8 08 00 9.3 E2 9.8′ 150 1204 Virgo B
Messier 87 12 30.8 12 23 9.6 E0–1 9.8′ 150 1204 Virgo A
Messier 88 12 32.0 14 25 10.3 Sb 6.8′ 100 2599 Virgo A
NGC 4526 12 32.0 07 42 10.6 S0 7.1′ 105 931 Virgo B
NGC 4527 12 34.1 02 39 12.4 Sb 4.6′ 69 1730 S Cloud
NGC 4536 12 34.4 02 11 11.1 SBbc 7.2′ 115 2140 S Cloud
Messier 91 12 35.4 14 30 11.0 SBb 5.2′ 80 803 Virgo A
NGC 4550 12 35.5 12 13 12.5 S0 3.2′ 50 704 Virgo A
Messier 89 12 35.7 12 33 10.7 E0 5.0′ 75 628 Virgo A
NGC 4567 12 36.5 11 15 12.1 Sbc 2.8′ 40 2588 Virgo A
NGC 4568 12 36.6 11 14 11.7 Sbc 4.4′ 65 2578 Virgo A
Messier 90 12 36.8 13 10 10.2 SBab 10.5′ 160 87 Virgo A
NGC 4571 12 36.9 14 13 11.9 Sc 3.7′ 55 659 Virgo A
Messier 58 12 37.7 11 49 10.6 SBb 5.6′ 85 1839 Virgo A
Messier 59 12 42.9 11 39 10.8 E5 5.0′ 75 751 Virgo A or Virgo E
Messier 60 12 43.7 11 33 9.8 E2 7.2′ 110 1452 Virgo A, Virgo E, or Virgo C
NGC 4651 12 43.7 16 24 11.4 Sc 4.0′ 60 1113
NGC 4654 12 43.9 13 08 11.1 SBc 5.0′ 75 1349 Virgo A

Fainter galaxies within the cluster are usually known by their numbers in the Virgo Cluster Catalog, particularly members of the numerous dwarf galaxy population.[26]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Following the entry for M91 in the Connoissance des Temps for 1784, Messier added the following note:
    The constellation of Virgo, & especially the northern Wing is one of the constellations which encloses the most Nebulae: this Catalog contains thirteen which have been determined: viz. Nos. 49, 58, 59, 60, 61, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, & 91. All these nebulae appear to be without stars: one can see them only in a very good sky, & near their meridian passage. Most of these nebulae have been pointed to me by Mr. Méchain.[5]

References

  1. ^ a b c d "NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database". Results for Virgo Cluster. Retrieved 2006-10-19.
  2. ^ Mei, Simona; Blakeslee, John P.; Côté, Patrick; Tonry, John L.; West, Michael J.; Ferrarese, Laura; Jordán, Andrés; Peng, Eric W.; Anthony, André; Merritt, Davi (2007). "The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey. XIII. SBF Distance Catalog and the Three-dimensional Structure of the Virgo Cluster". The Astrophysical Journal. 655 (1): 144–162. arXiv:astro-ph/0702510. Bibcode:2007ApJ...655..144M. doi:10.1086/509598.
  3. ^ "Virgo Cluster". Cosmos. Swinburne University of Technology.
  4. ^ Fouqué, P.; Solanes, J. M.; Sanchis, T.; Balkowski, C. (2001). "Structure, mass and distance of the Virgo cluster from a Tolman-Bondi model". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 375 (3): 770–780. arXiv:astro-ph/0106261. Bibcode:2001A&A...375..770F. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20010833.
  5. ^ "Messier 91 — Observations and Descriptions". SEDS.
  6. ^ "Virgo Cluster | Messier Objects". www.messier-objects.com. Retrieved 2018-06-24.
  7. ^ Côté, Patrick; Blakeslee, John P.; Ferrarese, Laura; Jordán, Andrés; Mei, Simona; Merritt, David; Milosavljević, Miloš; Peng, Eric W.; Tonry, John L.; et al. (July 2004). "The ACS Virgo Cluster Survey". The Astrophysical Journal. 153 (1): 223–242. arXiv:astro-ph/0404138. Bibcode:2004ApJS..153..223C. doi:10.1086/421490.
  8. ^ M. Fukugita; S. Okamura; N. Yasuda (1993). "Spatial distribution of spiral galaxies in the Virgo Cluster from the Tully-Fisher relation". Astrophysical Journal. 412: L13–L16. Bibcode:1993ApJ...412L..13F. doi:10.1086/186928.
  9. ^ "Virgo Cluster". ned.ipac.caltech.edu. Retrieved 2018-06-24.
  10. ^ a b c Boselli, A.; Voyer, E.; Boissier, S.; Cucciati, O.; Consolandi, G.; Cortese, L.; Fumagalli, M.; Gavazzi, G.; Heinis, S.; Roehlly, Y.; Toloba, E. (2014). "The GALEX Ultraviolet Virgo Cluster Survey (GUViCS). IV. The role of the cluster environment on galaxy evolution". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 570: A69. arXiv:1407.4986. Bibcode:2014A&A...570A..69B. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201424419. A69.
  11. ^ Chamaraux, P.; Balkowski, C.; Gerard, E. (1980). "The H I deficiency of the Virgo cluster spirals". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 83 (1–2): 38–51. Bibcode:1980A&A....83...38C.
  12. ^ a b The Virgo Super Cluster: home of M87 (with frames)
  13. ^ a b c d Gavazzi, G.; Boselli, A.; Scodeggio, M.; Pierini, D.; Belsole, E. (1999). "The 3D structure of the Virgo cluster from H-band Fundamental Plane and Tully-Fisher distance determinations". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 304 (3): 595–610. arXiv:astro-ph/9812275. Bibcode:1999MNRAS.304..595G. doi:10.1046/j.1365-8711.1999.02350.x.
  14. ^ Tully, R. B.; Shaya, E. J. (1984). "Infall of galaxies into the Virgo cluster and some cosmological constraints". Astrophysical Journal. 281: 31–55. Bibcode:1984ApJ...281...31T. doi:10.1086/162073.
  15. ^ Lea, S. M.; Mushotzky, R.; Holt, S. S. (1982). "Einstein Observatory solid state spectrometer observations of M87 and the Virgo cluster". Astrophysical Journal. 262 (1): 24–32. Bibcode:1982ApJ...262...24L. doi:10.1086/160392.
  16. ^ Ferguson, H. (1997). "Intergalactic Stars in the Virgo Cluster". HST proposal: 7411. Bibcode:1997hst..prop.7411F.
  17. ^ Ferguson, Henry C.; Tanvir, Nial R.; von Hippel, Ted (January 1998). "Detection of intergalactic red-giant-branch stars in the Virgo cluster". Nature. 391 (6666): 461–463. arXiv:astro-ph/9801228. Bibcode:1998Natur.391..461F. doi:10.1038/35087. ISSN 0028-0836.
  18. ^ a b Ferguson, Henry C.; Tanvir, Nial R.; von Hippel, Ted (1998). "Detection of intergalactic red-giant-branch stars in the Virgo cluster". Nature. 391 (6666): 461–463. arXiv:astro-ph/9801228. Bibcode:1998Natur.391..461F. doi:10.1038/35087.
  19. ^ Feldmeier, J.; Ciardullo, R.; Jacoby, G. (1998). "Intracluster Planetary Nebulae in the Virgo Cluster. I. Initial Results". Astrophysical Journal. 503: 109–117. arXiv:astro-ph/9803062. Bibcode:1998ApJ...503..109F. doi:10.1086/305981.
  20. ^ Takamiya, Marianne; West, Michael; Côté, Patrick; Jordán, Andrés; Peng, Eric; Ferrarese, Laura (2009). "IGCs in the Virgo Cluster". Globular Clusters – Guides to Galaxies, Eso Astrophysics Symposia, Volume. Eso Astrophysics Symposia: 361–365. Bibcode:2009gcgg.book..361T. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-76961-3_83. ISBN 978-3-540-76960-6.
  21. ^ Durrell, Patrick R.; Accetta, K.; Feldmeier, J. J.; Mihos, J. C.; Ciardullo, R.; Peng, E. W.; Members of the NGVS team (2010). "Searching for Intracluster Globular Clusters in the Virgo Cluster". Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society. 42: 567. Bibcode:2010AAS...21547814D.
  22. ^ a b Lee, Myung Gyoon; Park, Hong Soo; Hwang, Ho Seong (2010). "Detection of a Large-Scale Structure of Intracluster Globular Clusters in the Virgo Cluster". Science. 328 (5976): 334–. arXiv:1003.2499. Bibcode:2010Sci...328..334L. doi:10.1126/science.1186496. PMID 20223950.
  23. ^ Gerhard, Ortwin; Arnaboldi, Magda; Freeman, Kenneth C.; Okamura, Sadanori (2002). "Isolated Star Formation: A Compact H II Region in the Virgo Cluster". The Astrophysical Journal. 580 (2): L121–L124. arXiv:astro-ph/0211341. Bibcode:2002ApJ...580L.121G. doi:10.1086/345657.
  24. ^ "Galaxy On Line Database Milano Network". GOLDMine. Retrieved 2012-08-06.
  25. ^ "The Virgo Cluster". Retrieved 2013-04-06.
  26. ^ Binggeli, Bruno; Sandage, Allan; Tammann, Gustav (1985). "Studies of the Virgo Cluster. II – A Catalog of 2096 Galaxies in the Virgo Cluster Area". Astronomical Journal. American Astronomical Society. 90: 1681–1759. Bibcode:1985AJ.....90.1681B. doi:10.1086/113874. Retrieved 30 November 2016.

External links

Coordinates: Sky map 12h 27m 00s, 12° 43′ 00″

Messier 61

Messier 61 (also known as M61 or NGC 4303) is an intermediate barred spiral galaxy in the Virgo Cluster of galaxies. It was discovered by Barnaba Oriani on May 5, 1779. This was six days before Charles Messier observed the same galaxy, but had mistaken it as a comet.

Messier 86

Messier 86 (also known as M86 or NGC 4406) is an elliptical or lenticular galaxy in the constellation Virgo. It was discovered by Charles Messier in 1781. M86 lies in the heart of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies and forms a most conspicuous group with another large galaxy known as Messier 84. It displays the highest blue shift of all Messier objects, as it is approaching the Milky Way at 244 km/s. This is due to its falling towards the center of the Virgo cluster from the opposite side, which causes it to move in the direction of the Milky Way.Messier 86 is linked by several filaments of ionized gas to the severely disrupted spiral galaxy NGC 4438 and shows some gas and interstellar dust that may have been stripped of it like the one present in those filaments. It is also suffering ram-pressure stripping as it moves at high speed through Virgo's intracluster medium, losing its interstellar medium and leaving behind a very long trail of X ray-emitting hot gas that has been detected with the help of the Chandra space telescope.Messier 86 has a rich system of globular clusters, with a total number of around 3,800. Its halo also has a number of stellar streams interpreted as remmants of dwarf galaxies that have been disrupted and absorbed by this galaxy.

Messier 89

Messier 89 (M89 for short, also known as NGC 4552) is an elliptical galaxy in the constellation Virgo. It was discovered by Charles Messier on March 18, 1781. M89 is a member of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies.

Messier 90

Messier 90 (also known as M90 and NGC 4569) is an intermediate spiral galaxy exhibiting a weak inner ring structure about 60 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. It was discovered by Charles Messier in 1781.

Messier 99

Messier 99 or M99, also known as NGC 4254, is a grand design spiral galaxy in the northern constellation Coma Berenices approximately 15 megaparsecs (49 megalight-years) in distance from the Milky Way. It was discovered by Pierre Méchain on March 17, 1781. The discovery was then reported to Charles Messier, who included the object in the Messier Catalogue of comet-like objects. Messier 99 was one of the first galaxies in which a spiral pattern was seen. This pattern was first identified by Lord Rosse in the spring of 1846.This galaxy has a morphological classification of SA(s)c, indicating a pure spiral shape with loosely wound arms. It has a peculiar shape with one normal looking arm and an extended arm that is less tightly wound. The galaxy is inclined by 42° to the line-of-sight with a major axis position angle of 68°. Four supernovae have been observed in this galaxy: SN 1967H (type II), 1972Q, 1986I (type II), and 2014L (type Ic).A bridge of neutral hydrogen gas links NGC 4254 with VIRGOHI21, an HI region and a possible dark galaxy. The gravity from the latter may have distorted M99 and drawn out the gas bridge, as the two galaxy-sized objects may have had a close encounter before they went their separate ways. However, VIRGOHI21 may instead be tidal debris from an interaction with the lenticular galaxy NGC 4262 some 280 million years ago. It is expected that the drawn out arm will relax to match the normal arm once the encounter is over.

While not classified as a starburst galaxy, M99 has a star formation activity three times larger than other galaxies of similar Hubble type that may have been triggered by the encounter. M99 is likely entering the Virgo Cluster for the first time and is located at the periphery of the cluster at a projected separation of 3.7°, or around one megaparsec, from the cluster center at Messier 87. The galaxy is undergoing ram-pressure stripping as it moves through the intracluster medium.

NGC 4207

NGC 4207 is a spiral galaxy located about 50 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. The galaxy was discovered by astronomer Heinrich d'Arrest on March 23, 1865. NGC 4207 is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4388

NGC 4388 is an active spiral galaxy located in the Virgo Cluster. NGC 4388 is also considered to be one of the brightest galaxies in the Virgo Cluster due to its luminous nucleus.

NGC 4466

NGC 4466 is an edge-on spiral galaxy located about 50 million light-years away in the constellation of Virgo. NGC 4466 was discovered by astronomer Bindon Stoney on February 26, 1851. The galaxy is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4467

NGC 4467 is an elliptical galaxy located about 78 million light-years away in the constellation of Virgo. NGC 4467 was discovered by astronomer Otto Struve on April 28, 1851. NGC 4467 is a companion of Messier 49 and is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4483

NGC 4483 is a barred lenticular galaxy located about 55 million light-years away in the constellation of Virgo. NGC 4483 was discovered by astronomer Heinrich d'Arrest on March 19, 1865. NGC 4483 is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4488

NGC 4488 is a lenticular galaxy located about 60 million light-years away in the constellation of Virgo. The galaxy was discovered by astronomer William Herschel on December 28, 1785. NGC 4488 is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4503

NGC 4503 is a barred lenticular galaxy located around 41 to 74 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. NGC 4503 was discovered by astronomer William Herschel on March 15, 1784. NGC 4503 is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4519

NGC 4519 is a barred spiral galaxy located about 70 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. NGC 4519 was discovered by astronomer William Herschel on April 15, 1784. It has companion galaxy known as PGC 41706 and is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4528

NGC 4528 is a barred lenticular galaxy located about 50 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. It was discovered by astronomer William Herschel on March 15, 1784. The galaxy is member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4531

NGC 4531 is a spiral galaxy located about 50 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. It was discovered by astronomer William Herschel on April 17, 1784. NGC 4531 is member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4550

NGC 4550 is a barred lenticular galaxy located in the constellation of Virgo that can be seen with amateur telescopes. It lies at a distance of 50 million light-years (15.5 mega parsecs) from the Milky Way and is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4578

NGC 4578 is a lenticular galaxy located about 55 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. NGC 4578 was discovered by astronomer William Herschel on January 18, 1784 and is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4607

NGC 4607 is an edge-on spiral galaxy located about 56 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo. NGC 4607 was discovered by astronomer R. J. Mitchell on April 24, 1854. The galaxy is a member of the Virgo Cluster.

NGC 4654

NGC 4654 is an intermediate spiral galaxy in the constellation of Virgo at a distance of 55 million light years (16.8 megaparsecs) from the Milky Way that can be spotted with amateur telescopes.

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