Antilhue - Chile

The Antennae
Home Clusters Galaxies Nebulae Solar System Bennett Catalogue Published images



Image Data

Designation NGC 4038 + NGC 4039, The Antennae, The Ringtail Galaxy
Object type Colliding galaxy pair
Coordinates 12 h 02 min     -18° 30'   (Corvus) 
Description A cosmic embrace 60 million light years away.  Shorter exposures show the brightest features of these interacting galaxies as a mirrored question mark or a ringtail.  Deeper exposures, such as the one shown here, reveal two filaments about 8 resp. 12 arc minutes long that emit strongly in radio wavelengths and were created by the tidal forces of the collision process. These forces also trigger not only new star forming regions, but even a new galaxy: the brighter bluish area near the end of the top (southern) arm is NGC 4038S, a so-called TDG:  Tidal Dwarf Galaxy.

Click on the image for higher resolution.  The field of view is 25 x 37 arc minutes with north towards the lower left.  Here is an earlier, narrower field image.

Exposure NRGB 640:120:120:120 min @ -20°C  -  all unbinned, no filter on luminance
Camera SBIG STL-11000 with  Astronomik Type II RGB filter set, selfguided
Optics RCOS 14.5" Ritchey-Chrétien @ f/9
Mount Astro-Physics AP1200GTO
Software MaxIm DL/CCD, Sigma Pre Beta 11, Adobe Photoshop CS
Location - Date - Time San Esteban (Chile) - 26Mar  06:00 UTC and 22, 23 resp. 24May2006  02:00 UTC
Conditions Transparency 4-7/10,  Seeing 5-7/10, Temperature +14°C, high cloud on 22.05