Magellanic cloud

magellanic cloud

The Magellanic Clouds. The Large Magellanic Cloud is top right, the Small Magellanic Cloud is bottom left. Credit: AAO The Magellanic Clouds are comprised of two irregular galaxies, the Large Magellanic Cloud ( LMC) and the Small Magellanic Cloud ( SMC), which orbit the Milky Way once every 1,500 million years and each other once every 900 million years.

Lying only about 200,000 light years away, they were the closest known galaxies to the Milky Way until recently, when the Sagittarius and Canis Major dwarf galaxies were discovered and found to be even closer. Although very close to us, the Magellanic Clouds have played a significant role in our understanding of the distant Universe.

Henrietta Leavitt discovered the period- luminosity relation for Cepheids while studying variable stars in the SMC. This has become one of the most important relations in determining distances to objects in the Universe, and forms the first rung of the extragalactic distance ladder.

In addition, the metallicity of the Magellanic Clouds is much lower than that of the Milky Way. These lower metallicities align more closely with the conditions found in the early Universe magellanic cloud the evolution magellanic cloud deaths of magellanic cloud could enrich the interstellar medium) giving astronomers an idea of the processes that might have been in action billions of years ago.

Another important feature associated with the Magellanic Clouds is the Magellanic Stream. Extending half way around the Milky Way, this is a tidal tail of gas that has been stripped from the Small Magellanic Cloud by an interaction with either the Milky Way or the Large Magellanic Cloud (the actual culprit is still a topic of research).

Position of the Magellanic Magellanic cloud relative to the Milky Way. [2] Abbreviations: • GMW – Large Magellanic Cloud • KMW – Small Magellanic Cloud • GSP – Galactic South Pole • MSI – First hydrogen compression in the Magellanic Current • 3 – 30 Doradus • W – Wing of the KMW The green arrow indicates the direction of rotation of the Magellanic Clouds around the center of magellanic cloud Milky Way.

The Magellanic Clouds (or Nubeculae Magellani [3]) are two irregular dwarf galaxies in the southern celestial hemisphere. Orbiting the Milky Way galaxy, these satellite galaxies are members of the Local Group.

Because both show signs of a bar structure, they are often reclassified as Magellanic spiral galaxies. The two galaxies are: • Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), approximately 163,000 light-years away • Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), approximately 206,000 light years away Contents • 1 Magellanic cloud • 2 Characteristics • 3 Mini Magellanic Cloud (MMC) • 4 See also • 5 References • 6 Sources • 7 External links History [ edit ] The Magellanic Clouds have been known since ancient times to indigenous peoples across South America and Africa, and from the first millennium in Western Asia.

The first preserved mention of the Large Magellanic Cloud is believed to be in petroglyphs and rock drawings found in Chile. They may be the objects mentioned by the polymath Ibn Qutaybah (d.

889 CE), in his book on Al-Anwā̵’ (the stations of the Moon in pre-Islamic Arabian culture): "وأسفل من سهيل قدما سهيل magellanic cloud. وفى مجرى قدمى سهيل، من خلفهما كواكب زهر كبار، لا ترى بالعراق، يسميها أهل تهامة الأعبار "And below Canopus, there are the feet of Canopus, and on their extension, behind them bright big stars, not seen in Iraq, the people of Tihama call them al-a‘bār." [4] Later Al Sufi, a professional astronomer, [5] in 964 CE, in his Book of Fixed Stars, mentioned the same quote, but with a different spelling.

Under Argo Navis, he quoted that "unnamed others have claimed that beneath Canopus there are two stars known as the 'feet of Canopus', magellanic cloud beneath those there are bright white stars that are unseen in Iraq nor Najd, and that the inhabitants of Tihama call them al-Baqar [cows], and Ptolemy did not mention any of this so we [Al-Sufi] do not know if this is true or false." [6] Both Ibn Qutaybah and Al-Sufi were probably quoting from the former's contemporary (and compatriot) and famed scientist Abu Hanifa Dinawari's mostly lost work on Anwaa.

Abu Hanifa was probably quoting earlier sources, which may be just travelers stories, and hence Al-Sufi's comments about their veracity.

In Europe, the Clouds were first reported by 16th century Italian authors Peter Martyr d'Anghiera and Andrea Corsali, both based on Portuguese voyages. [7] [8] Subsequently, they were reported by Antonio Pigafetta, who accompanied the expedition of Ferdinand Magellan on its circumnavigation of the world in 1519–1522.

[9] [3] However, naming the clouds after Magellan did not become widespread until much later. In Bayer's Uranometria they are designated as nubecula major and nubecula minor.

[10] [11] In the 1756 star map of the French astronomer Lacaille, they are designated as le Grand Nuage and le Petit Nuage ("the Large Cloud" and "the Small Cloud"). [12] [13] John Herschel studied the Magellanic Clouds from South Africa, writing an 1847 report detailing 919 objects in the Large Magellanic Cloud and 244 objects in the Small Magellanic Cloud.

[14] In 1867 Cleveland Abbe suggested that they were separate satellites of the Milky Way. [15] Distances were first estimated by Ejnar Hertzsprung in 1913 using 1912 measurements of Cepheid variables in the SMC by Henrietta Leavitt. [16] [17] Recalibration of the Cepheid scales allowed Harlow Shapley to refine the measurement, [18] and these were again revised in 1952 following further research.

[19] Characteristics [ edit ] LMC and SMC rendered from Gaia EDR3 data with foreground stars removed The Large Magellanic Magellanic cloud and its neighbour and relative, the Small Magellanic Cloud, are conspicuous objects in the southern hemisphere, looking like separated pieces of the Milky Way to the naked eye.

Roughly 21 ° apart in the night sky, the true distance between them is roughly 75,000 light-years. Until the discovery of the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy in 1994, they were the closest known galaxies to our own (since 2003, the Canis Major Dwarf Galaxy was discovered to be magellanic cloud still, and is now considered the actual nearest neighbor).

The LMC lies about 160,000 light years away, [20] [21] [22] [23] while the SMC is around 200,000.

magellanic cloud

{INSERTKEYS} [24] The LMC is about twice the diameter of the SMC (14,000 ly and 7,000 ly respectively). For comparison, the Milky Way is about 100,000 ly across. The total mass of these two galaxies is uncertain. Only a fraction of their gas seems to have coalesced into stars and they probably both have large dark matter halos. One recent estimate of the total mass of the LMC is about 1/10 that of the Milky Way. That would make the LMC rather a large galaxy in the current observable universe.

Since the sizes of relatively nearby galaxies are highly skewed, the average mass can be a misleading statistic. In terms of rank, the LMC appears to be the fourth most massive member of over 50 galaxies in the local group. Suggesting that the Magellanic cloud system is historically not a part of the Milky Way is evidence that the SMC has been in orbit about the LMC for a very long time.

The Magellanic system seems most similar to the distinct NGC 3109 system, which is on the edge of the Local Group. Astronomers have long assumed that the Magellanic Clouds have orbited the Milky Way at approximately their current distances, but evidence suggests that it is rare for them to come as close to the Milky Way as they are now.

[25] Observation and theoretical evidence suggest that the Magellanic Clouds have both been greatly distorted by tidal interaction with the Milky Way as they travel close to it. The LMC maintains a very clear spiral structure in radio-telescope images of neutral hydrogen. Streams of neutral hydrogen connect them to the Milky Way and to each other, and both resemble disrupted barred spiral galaxies.

[26] Their gravity has affected the Milky Way as well, distorting the outer parts of the galactic disk. Aside from their different structure and lower mass, they differ from our galaxy in two major ways. They are gas-rich; a higher fraction of their mass is hydrogen and helium compared to the Milky Way.

[27] They are also more metal-poor than the Milky Way; the youngest stars in the LMC and SMC have a metallicity of 0.5 and 0.25 times solar, respectively. [28] Both are noted for their nebulae and young stellar populations, but as in our own galaxy their stars range from the very young to the very old, indicating a long stellar formation history.

[29] The Large Magellanic Cloud was the host galaxy to a supernova ( SN 1987A), the brightest observed in over four centuries. Measurements with the Hubble Space Telescope, announced in 2006, suggest the Magellanic Clouds may be moving too fast to be long term companions of the Milky Way. [30] If they are in orbit, that orbit takes at least 4 billion years. They are possibly on a first approach and we are witnessing the start of a galactic merger that may overlap with the Milky Way's expected merger with the Andromeda Galaxy (and perhaps the Triangulum Galaxy) in the future.

In 2019, astronomers discovered the young star cluster Price-Whelan 1 using Gaia data. The star cluster has a low metallicity and belongs to the leading arm of the Magellanic Clouds.

The existence of this star cluster suggests that the leading arm of the Magellanic Clouds is 90,000 light-years away from the Milky Way—closer than previously thought. [31] Mini Magellanic Cloud (MMC) [ edit ] Astrophysicists D. S. Mathewson, V. L. Ford and N.

Visvanathan proposed that the SMC may in fact be split in two, with a smaller section of this galaxy behind the main part of the SMC (as seen from Earth's perspective), and separated by about 30,000 light years. They suggest the reason for this is due to a past interaction with the LMC splitting the SMC, and that the two sections are still moving apart. They have dubbed this smaller remnant the Mini Magellanic Cloud. [32] [33] See also [ edit ] • Astronomical surveys of the Magellanic Clouds • Irregular galaxy • Magellanic Stream • Magellanic Bridge References [ edit ] • ^ "Media Advisory: Virtual Press Conference to Mark ALMA Inauguration".

ESO . Retrieved 3 April 2013. • ^ Grafic from Sterne und Weltraum, Issue 5/98 • ^ a b Allen, R. H. (1963). Star Names: Their Lore and Meaning ( Reprint ed.).

New York, NY: Dover Publications Inc. pp. 294–295. • ^ "Al-Anwaa, Ibn Qutaybah" . Retrieved 4 Sep 2017. • ^ "Observatoire de Paris (Abd-al-Rahman Al Sufi)" . Retrieved 22 July 2011. • ^ "Book of Fixed Stars, Al-Sufi (manuscript written and illustrated by his son)" . Retrieved 22 Feb 2017. • ^ For Peter Martyr d'Anghiera's mention of the Magellanic clouds, see: • Petrus Martyr de Anghiera (1574) De rebus Oceanicis et Orbe Novo [Concerning the ocean and the new world] (Cologne, (Germany): Geruinum Calenium (Gerwin Calenius), 1574), decade 3, book 1, p.

217. (in Latin) From p. 217: "Assecuti sunt Portugallenses alterius poli gradum quintum & quinquagesimum amplius, ubi punctum, circumeuntes quasdam nubeculas licet intueri, veluti in lactea via sparsos fulgores per universum coeli globum intra eius spatii latitudinem." (The Portuguese reached beyond the 55th degree of the other pole, where one may observe certain nebulae revolving around the point [i.e., the southern celestial pole], scattered in the Milky Way like luminous patches throughout the whole sphere of the sky, within the breadth of its extent.

[That is, nebulae appear in or beside the Milky Way throughout its entire length in the southern sky.]) • Humboldt, Alexander von, with E.C.

Otte and B.H. Paul, trans., Cosmos: A Sketch of a Physical Description of the Universe (London, England: Henry G. Bohn, 1852), vol. 4, pp. 340–341. • For further details of – and other editions of – Peter Martyr d'Anghiera's book De Orbe Novo, see Wikipedia's article: Decades of the New World • ^ From 1515 to 1517, Andrea Corsali sailed to the East Indies and China in a Portuguese ship.

{/INSERTKEYS}

magellanic cloud

In 1516, Andrea Corsali sent a letter to Giuliano de' Medici, Duke of Nemours, mentioning the Magellanic clouds. This letter was translated into English by Richard Eden (c.1520–1576) and published in 1555. The relevant part of Corsali's letter (translated by Eden) appears in: • Richard Eden, with Edward Arber, ed., The First Three English Books on America … (Birmingham, England: 1885), "Of the pole antarike and the starres abowt the same … ", p.

279. Corsali said that his ship had passed the Cape of Good Hope ("the cape of Bona Speranza") and was at 37 degrees south latitude when he observed the Magellanic clouds: "Here we sawe a marueylous order of starres, so that in the parte of heauen contrary to owre northe pole, to know in what place and degree the south pole was, we tooke the day with the soonne, and obserued the nyght with the Astrolabie, and sawe manifestly twoo clowdes of reasonable bygnesse mouynge abowt the place of the pole continually now rysynge and nowe faulynge, so keepynge theyr continuall course in circular mouying, with a starre euer in the myddest which is turned abowt with them abowte xi degrees from the pole." ("Here we saw a marvelous arrangement of stars, so that in the part of heaven [that is] opposite our north [celestial] pole, in order to know in what place and degree [of latitude] the south [celestial] pole was, we [measured our position during] the day using the sun, and observed [our position during] the night using an astrolabe, and saw clearly two clouds of reasonable bigness revolving around the location of the [southern celestial] pole, continually now rising and now falling, thus maintaining their continual course of circular motion, with a star always in the middle [between them], which revolves with them about 11 degrees from the [south celestial] pole.") • See also: Kanas, Nick, Star Maps: History, Artistry, and Cartography, 2nd ed.

(New York, New York: Springer Science + Business Media, 2012), § 4.3.2.2 Andreas Corsali, p. 118. • ^ Pigafetta et al., with Lord Stanley of Alderley, trans., The First Voyage Round the World, by Magellan (London, England: Hakluyt Society, 1874), p. 66. From p. 66: "The antarctic pole is not so covered with stars as the arctic, for there are to be seen there many small stars congregated together, which are like to two clouds a little separated magellanic cloud one another, and a little dimmed, … " • ^ Bayer Johann (1603) Uranometria.

Augsburg, (Germany): Christoph Mang. Star chart 49. The Large Magellanic cloud Cloud magellanic cloud Nubecula major) appears below the chart's center and just above the fish Dorado ; the Small Magellanic Cloud ( Nubecula minor) appears to the left and below the chart's center and touches the right side of Hydrus the water snake.

• ^ Bayer, J., (1661) Uranometria, pl. Aaa (49) U.S. Naval Observatory; retrieved on 2009-09-05 • ^ de la Caille (1752). "Table des ascensions droites et des déclinaisons apparentes des étoiles australes renfermées dans le magellanic cloud cu Capricorne ; observées au cap de Bonne-espérance, dans l'intervalle du 6 Août 1751, au 18 Juillet 1752" [Table of the apparent right ascensions and declinations of the southern stars contained within the Tropic of Capricorn ; observed at the Cape of Good Hope during the period from 6 August magellanic cloud to 18 July 1752].

Histoire de l'Académie Royale des Sciences, avec les Mémoires de Mathématique & de Physique de magellanic cloud Royale des Sciences (in French): 539–592. See the plate ( Planisphere contenant des constellations celestes comprises entre le pole austral et le Tropique du Capricorne [Planisphere containing the celestial constellations included between the south [celestial] pole and the Tropic of Capricorn]) following p.

592.

magellanic cloud

(The Large Magellanic Cloud ( Le Grand Nuage) and the Small Magellanic Cloud ( Le Petit Nuage) appear just below the center of the diagram.) • ^ de Lacaille, N. L., (1756) Planisphere contenant les Constellations Celestes, Memoires Academie Royale des Sciences magellanic cloud 1752. Archived 2009-05-09 at the Wayback Machine Linda Hall Library; retrieved on 2009-09-05 • ^ Herschel, John F.W.

(1847). Results of Astronomical Observations Made During the Years 1834, 5, 6, 7, 8 at the Cape of Magellanic cloud Hope. London, England: Smith, Elder and Co. pp. 151–165. • ^ Abbe, Cleveland (1867). "On the distribution of the nebulae in space". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 27 (7): 257–264. doi: 10.1093/mnras/27.7.257a. From p. 262: "2. The Nebulae resolved and unresolved lie in general without [i.e., outside of] the Via Lactea [i.e., Milky Way], which is therefore essentially stellar.

magellanic cloud

3. The visible universe is composed of systems, of which the Via Lactea, the two Nubeculae [sic] [i.e., Magellanic Clouds], and the Nebulae, are individuals, and which are themselves composed of stars (either simple, multiple, or in clusters) and of gaseous bodies of both regular and irregular outlines." • ^ Hertzsprung, E. (1913). "Über die räumliche Verteilung der Veränderlichen vom δ Cephei-Typus" [On the spatial distribution of variable [stars] of the δ Cepheid type].

Astronomische Nachrichten (in German). 196 (4692): 201–208. Bibcode: 1913AN.196.201H. From p. 204: "Zunächst ergibt sich eine Parallaxe der kleinen Magellanschen Wolke.

… und als außerhalb der Milchstraße liegend zu betrachten sein." (First, a parallax of the Small Magellanic Cloud follows. According to the 13 δ Cepheid variable [stars] that are treated above, the absolute brightness (the mean between the maximum and the minimum) of -7.3 m corresponds to a period of 6.6 days.

Variable [stars] of the period 6.6 days have in the Small Magellanic Cloud a mean photographic star size of 14.5 m. If one assumes — according to the universal yellow color of the δ Cepheid variables — a color index of + 1.5 m, then the corresponding visual star size will equal 13.0 m.

This consideration thus leads to a parallax p of the Small Magellanic Cloud, which is given by 5 log p = -7.3 - 13.0 = -20.3. One obtains p = 0.0001", corresponding to a distance of about 3000 lightyears. Since the galactic latitude of the Small Magellanic Cloud amounts to about - 45°, then it would lie — according to the foregoing — about 2000 lightyears from a plane [passing] through our Sun [and] lying parallel to the Milky Way and [it] would have to be regarded as lying outside the Milky Way.) • ^ Leavitt, Henrietta S.; Pickering, Edward C.

(March 3, 1912). - "Periods of 25 Variable Stars in the Small Magellanic Cloud". Harvard College Observatory Circular no. 173. • Summarized in German: Pickering, E.C.; Wendell, O.C. (1912). "Mitteilungen über veränderliche Sterne" [Reports about variable stars]. Astronomische Nachrichten (in German). 192 (13): 219–226. doi: 10.1002/asna.19121921303. See pp. 225-226. • ^ Shapley, Harlow (1918). "Studies on the colors and magnitudes in stellar clusters.

Seventh paper: The distances, distributions in space, and dimensions of 69 globular clusters". The Astrophysical Journal. 48: 154–181. doi: 10.1086/142423. See p. 155. • ^ Leverington, David (2013). Encyclopedia of magellanic cloud History of Astronomy and Astrophysics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 231–232. ISBN 978-0-521-89994-9. • ^ "A Cosmic Zoo in the Large Magellanic Cloud". European Southern Observatory Press Release. European Southern Observatory: 21.

1 June 2010. Bibcode: 2010eso.pres.21. Retrieved 29 August 2010. • ^ Macri, L. M.; et al. (2006). "A New Cepheid Distance to the Maser-Host Galaxy NGC 4258 and Its Implications for the Hubble Constant". The Astrophysical Journal. 652 (2): 1133–1149. arXiv: astro-ph/0608211.

Bibcode: 2006ApJ.652.1133M. doi: 10.1086/508530. S2CID 15728812. • ^ Freedman, Wendy L.; Madore, Barry F. "The Hubble Constant", Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics, 2010 • ^ Majaess, Daniel J.; Turner, David G.; Lane, David J.; Henden, Arne; Krajci, Tom "Anchoring the Universal Distance Scale via a Wesenheit Template", Journal of the American Association of Variable Star Observers, 2010 • ^ "Little Galaxy Explored".

Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology. 5 January 2010. Retrieved 29 August 2010. • ^ Ferris, Timothy (December 2011). "Dancing in the Dark". National Geographic. 220 (6): 118. • ^ [1] Archived July 15, 2005, at the Wayback Machine • ^ http://home.insightbb.com/~lasweb/lessons/magellanic.htm Home.insightbb.com Retrieved on 2007-05-31 • ^ http://aa.springer.de/papers/8336003/2300925/sc6.htm Aa.springer.de Retrieved on 2007-05-31 • ^ Chaisson and McMillan • ^ "Press release: Magellanic Clouds May Be Just Passing Through".

Harvard University. January 9, 2007. • ^ "IoW_20200109 - Gaia - Cosmos". www.cosmos.esa.int. Retrieved 2020-01-09. • ^ Magellanic cloud, D. S.; Ford, V. L.; Visvanathan, N. (1986). "The structure of the Small Magellanic Cloud". The Astrophysical Journal. 301: 664. Bibcode: 1986ApJ.301.664M. doi: 10.1086/163932. {{ cite journal}}: CS1 maint: uses authors parameter magellanic cloud link) • ^ http://iopscience.iop.org/1538-3881/122/1/220/200523.text.html The Astronomical Journal 122:220–231 July 2001 Sources [ edit ] • Eric Chaisson and Magellanic cloud McMillan, Astronomy Today (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1993), p.

550. • Michael Zeilik, Conceptual Astronomy (New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1993), pp. 357–8. External links [ edit ] • Magellanic Clouds Working Group • ESO: VISTA Peeks Through the Small Magellanic Cloud’s Dusty Veil incl. Photos & Animations Hidden categories: • CS1 French-language sources (fr) • Webarchive template wayback links • CS1 German-language sources (de) • CS1 maint: uses authors parameter • Articles with short description • Short description matches Wikidata • Articles with GND identifiers • Articles with J9U identifiers • Articles with LCCN identifiers • Articles with NDL identifiers • Articles with PLWABN identifiers • Afrikaans • العربية • Asturianu • Azərbaycanca • Беларуская • Беларуская (тарашкевіца) • Български • Català magellanic cloud Čeština • Deutsch • Eesti • Ελληνικά • Español • Esperanto • Euskara • فارسی • Français • Galego • 한국어 • Հայերեն • हिन्दी • Hrvatski • Bahasa Indonesia • Italiano • עברית • Kiswahili • Кыргызча • Lëtzebuergesch • Bahasa Melayu • မြန်မာဘာသာ • Nederlands • 日本語 • Norsk bokmål • Norsk nynorsk • Occitan • Oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча • Polski • Português • Română • Русский • Simple English • Slovenčina • Српски / srpski • Suomi • Svenska • தமிழ் • ไทย • Lea faka-Tonga • Türkçe • Magellanic cloud • Tiếng Việt • Winaray • 吴语 • 粵語 • Zazaki • 中文 Edit links • This page was last edited on 20 March 2022, at 20:33 (UTC).

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• Infinity & Beyond — Episode 21: The Voyager Missions • Infinity & Beyond — Magellanic cloud 20: What are quasars? • Infinity & Beyond — Episode 19: The Science of Star Wars • Infinity & Beyond — Episode 18: The Cosmic Microwave Background • Infinity & Beyond — Episode 17: What are Pulsars?

• Infinity & Beyond — Episode 16: Pluto's icy heart RECENT POSTS • Queen guitarist Brian May and David Eicher launch new astronomy book • Astronomy welcomes Caitlyn Buongiorno • Enter the Space & Beyond Box Photo Contest! • Last chance to join our 2020 Costa Rica Star Party! • Join Us in Tucson for Our Annual Public Star Party! • Learn about the Moon in a great new book The Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) is the southern sky’s greatest celestial wonder.

It is the Milky Way’s biggest satellite galaxy, just 160,000 light-years distant, and the fourth-largest member of the Local Group. The LMC lies primarily in the far-southern constellation Dorado the Swordfish, but some of it spills over into the neighboring constellation Mensa the Table Mountain, which lies even farther south. To see even part of the LMC, you must be south of latitude 20° north.

And for it to appear even halfway up in the sky at its highest, you’ll need to be at latitude 25° south. With a magnitude of 0.4, the LMC is an easy naked-eye object even from mildly light-polluted areas, so let’s start by looking at it as a whole.

Under a dark sky, use just your eyes to look at the LMC. You’ll magellanic cloud that its brightest region is a bar roughly 5° long by 1° wide. That makes it 10 times as long and twice as magellanic cloud as the Full Moon. The surrounding region is a fainter, oval haze measuring an amazing 6° by 4°. And you can extend the LMC’s boundary beyond this — just use binoculars or a low-power rich-field telescope.

Through a 6-inch or larger scope and an eyepiece that gives a magnification around 200x, slowly scan back and forth across the LMC’s face. You’ll see lots of star clusters and nebulae in the field of view. If you screw a nebula filter (perhaps an Oxygen-III) into your eyepiece, it will help you distinguish the nebulae from the clusters. The filter won’t make the nebulae brighter; rather, it will block most of the light from stars so the clusters won’t be as apparent.

Deep-sky objects abound in the LMC. It contains no less than 114 NGC objects. Here are a few that I’ve enjoyed looking at each time I’ve had the chance. Crank up the power Let’s start this list with NGC 1714. This tiny emission nebula (it measures only 1.2' across) sits on the western edge of the LMC just over 6° southwest of magnitude 3.8 Beta (β) Doradus.

Although it is small, its high surface brightness lets you crank up the magnification for a detailed view. Through an 8-inch scope, you’ll see a round glow with a bright northern rim. A magnitude 6.3 star, GSC 8889:215, lies just 8" west. And as a bonus, slightly fainter NGC 1715 — another emission nebula — lies 1' north of NGC 1714. Our next target, open cluster NGC 1755, also lies on the magellanic cloud edge of the LMC’s bar, slightly south of NGC 1714.

It glows at magnitude 9.9 and is 2.6' across. An 8-inch telescope at 100x reveals 20 stars of magnitudes 13 and 14 packed into an area 2' wide. You’ll also see a strong background glow from lots of stars too faint for your scope to resolve. A much fainter open cluster, NGC 1749, which glows at magnitude 13.5, lies 2' to the northwest. You’ll need a lot more than 8 inches of aperture to spot it. Our next target — or should I say group of targets, four emission nebulae — lies about 2° north of NGC 1755.

They’re close together, too, in an area less than 0.3° across. The one you’ll notice first is NGC 1763. It appears as a clumpy haze that measures 5' by 3', surrounded by a grouping of stars that looks like an open cluster — but it’s not.

Just 7' south, you’ll find NGC 1760. Move 7' east-southeast from NGC 1763, and you’ll encounter NGC 1769. Finally, NGC 1773 lies 9' east-northeast of NGC 1763. Because the LMC is a galaxy, we expect it to contain the full range of deep-sky objects.

(OK, except for galaxies.) Seek out NGC 1835, also along the western part of the bar, and you’ll be looking at a globular cluster, one of only two on this list.

It glows at magnitude 10.1 and measures 1.2' across. NGC 1835 looks round at low power, but crank up the magnification and you’ll see faint extensions to the east and west that double its length.

Two faint open clusters, magnitude 12.5 NGC 1828 and magellanic cloud 12.6 NGC 1830, lie 6' to the northwest. Next up is the massive open cluster NGC 1850. In fact, astronomers classify this as a super star cluster, one that is brighter and more massive than normal open clusters, which also may eventually become a globular cluster.

You’ll find NGC 1850 in the northeastern part of the LMC’s bar, with an apparent diameter of 3.4'. It’s so bright that it glows at magnitude 9.0. Point an 8-inch scope at this cluster, and you’ll see roughly 50 stars glowing at magnitudes 13 and 14.

The prominent clump of stars on Magellanic cloud 1850’s western edge, NGC 1850A, actually makes this object a double cluster.

Our next object, NGC 1866, is another open cluster that lies in the northern reaches of the LMC. I think this object will amaze you through a 12-inch or larger telescope. It glows at magnitude 9.7 and spans 4.5'. The easiest way to find it is to start at Beta Doradus and sweep 3.7° south-southwest. The brightest stars in this cluster glow at magellanic cloud magnitude, so you’ll need a large aperture to reveal them.

Through a 14-inch scope with an eyepiece that yields a magnification of 300x or higher, you’ll see hundreds magellanic cloud stars.

Moving to the north central region of the LMC, you’ll come across yet another clump of four emission nebulae, but they’re packed even closer together than the previous group I described. Indeed, NGC 1962, NGC 1965, NGC 1966, and NGC 1970 fit into a region only 5' across. Through an 8-inch telescope at low power, NGC 1962 will be the most apparent, although even it appears circular and featureless. Then crank up the magnification above 200x and examine the region north and east of NGC 1962.

You’ll see the other three nebulae arcing along its rim. Our next target is the other globular on this list, NGC 2019. It lies along the LMC’s bar just to the east of its center.

It’s not bright, glowing at magnitude 10.9. It’s also pretty small, measuring a scant 1' in diameter. The reason you’ll see it, however, is because of its small, bright central region.

NGC 2019 has a collapsed core — meaning its stars are unusually concentrated at its center — a phenomenon that’s happened in several other globular clusters in the Magellanic Clouds.

Magellanic cloud 8-inch telescope will reveal the core easily. It actually appears lumpy rather than starlike. Crank the power past 200x, and you should be able to spot NGC 2019’s irregular outer boundary. If you can double your aperture to 16 inches, individual stars will appear.

Our next object — the Tarantula Nebula — is the standout on this list and the only one with a common name. It has two others: 30 Doradus and the True Lover’s Knot. It’s also often called NGC 2070, but that specifically refers to the super star cluster at the nebula’s center. Because it lies so far south, most northern observers haven’t experienced this celestial wonder. And although it is some 160,000 light-years away, the Tarantula Magellanic cloud looks incredible even through medium-sized telescopes.

Although its apparent diameter is 40' by 25', its true diameter is slightly more than 1,800 light-years. If it were as close as the Orion Nebula (M42), it would span over 60° — one-third of the entire sky.

The brightest star cluster in the Tarantula Nebula and the most remarkable star-forming region anywhere is R136, whose designation comes from the Radcliffe Observatory Magellanic Clouds Catalogue, published in 1960. This cluster alone glows at magnitude 9.5. The 75 spectral class O stars at its heart are among the most massive, brightest, and hottest known.

Its total mass is more than 450,000 times that of the Sun. This cluster produces the ultraviolet radiation that causes the Tarantula Nebula to shine. Observers with even a 4-inch telescope will see a dense bar running north to south through the nebula’s center.

Then look for the loops and filaments within the gas. The longest filament begins near the cluster’s center and extends 7' to the south. It then heads eastward and curves an equal distance to the north. R136 is easy to spot as a 1'-wide region, and if you crank up the magnification, you’ll be able to pick out several dozen of its bright stars. Look also for the two dark bays, one slightly magellanic cloud than the other, just east of R136. Both these regions have nebulous filaments encroaching on their borders.

Their appearance led English astronomer William Henry Smyth to describe this nebula as the True Lover’s Knot. Some accounts say that 16th-century Dutch sailors tied similar knots to remind them of lovers they’d left behind. Once you have found the Tarantula Nebula, head just 0.3° east to open cluster NGC 2100. It glows at magnitude 9.6 and measures 2.8' across.

If you use an 8-inch telescope and a magnification around 200x, the first feature you’ll see will be the compact core. You’ll need higher power (and probably a bigger scope) to resolve any of its stars. Just surrounding the core, however, you should see magellanic cloud two dozen stars. The final object on this tour is open cluster NGC 2214. It has a diameter of 3.6' and a magnitude of 10.9. You’ll find it 4.5° east-northeast of the LMC’s center. For a better marker, look 0.7° north-northeast of magnitude 5.1 Nu (ν) Doradus.

A 4-inch telescope will show NGC 2214 as a faint haze. This is a tough nut to crack, though, even through a 12-inch scope. Crank the magnification to 250x or beyond and you’ll just start to resolve some of the cluster’s stars at its edge. Observe at your own pace When you train a telescope on the Large Magellanic Cloud, don’t rush to see everything. Many of the objects I’ve just described — the Tarantula Nebula being the exception — take a bit of coaxing at the eyepiece.

Believe me, your patience will be rewarded. Magellanic spiral galaxy that is a satellite of the Milky Way in the constellation Dorado Large Magellanic Magellanic cloud Observation data ( J2000 epoch) Constellation Dorado/ Mensa Right ascension 05 h 23 m 34.5 s [1] Declination −69° 45′ 22″ [1] Distance 163.0 kly (49.97 kpc) [2] Apparent magnitude (V) 0.9 [1] Characteristics Type SB(s)m [1] Mass 10 10 [3] M ☉ Size 14,000 ly magellanic cloud diameter ( ~4.3 kpc) [3] Apparent size (V) 10.75 ° × 9.17° [1] Other designations LMC, ESO 56- G 115, PGC 17223, [1] Nubecula Major [4] Constellation of Dorado: the LMC is the green circle at the south (bottom) of picture The Large Magellanic Cloud ( LMC), or Nubecula Major is a satellite galaxy of the Magellanic cloud Way.

[5] At a distance of around 50 kiloparsecs (≈160,000 light-years), [2] [6] [7] [8] the LMC is the second- or third-closest galaxy to the Milky Way, after the Sagittarius Dwarf Spheroidal ( ~16 kpc) and the possible dwarf irregular galaxy known as the Canis Major Overdensity. Based on readily visible stars and a mass of approximately 10 billion solar masses, the diameter of the LMC is about 14,000 light-years (4.3 kpc).

It is roughly a hundredth as massive as the Milky Way [3] and is the fourth-largest galaxy in the Local Group, after the Andromeda Galaxy (M31), the Milky Way and the Triangulum Galaxy (M33).

The LMC is classified as a Magellanic spiral. [9] It contains a stellar bar that is geometrically off center, suggesting that it was a barred dwarf spiral galaxy before its spiral arms were disrupted, likely by tidal interactions from the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) and the Milky Way's gravity.

[10] With a declination of about −70°, the LMC is visible as a faint "cloud" from the southern hemisphere of the Earth and from as far north as 20° N. It straddles the constellations Dorado and Mensa and has an apparent length of about 10° to the naked eye, 20 times the Moon's diameter, from dark sites away from light pollution. [11] The Milky Way and the LMC are predicted to merge in approximately 2.4 billion years.

[12] Small part of the Large Magellanic Cloud [13] Both clouds have been easily visible for southern nighttime observers well back into prehistory. It has been claimed that the first-known written mention of the Large Magellanic Cloud was by the Persian astronomer ' Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi Shirazi (later known in Europe as "Azophi"), in his Book of Fixed Stars around 964 AD. [14] [15] However, this seems to be a misunderstanding of a reference to some stars south of Canopus which he admits he has not seen.

[16] [17] The first confirmed recorded observation was in 1503–1504 by Amerigo Vespucci in a letter about his third voyage. He mentioned "three Canopes [ sic], two bright and one obscure"; "bright" refers to the two Magellanic Clouds, and "obscure" refers to the Coalsack.

[18] Ferdinand Magellan sighted the LMC on his voyage in 1519 and his writings brought it into common Western knowledge.

magellanic cloud

The galaxy now bears his name. [15] The galaxy and southern end of Dorado are in the current epoch at opposition on about 5 December when thus visible from sunset to sunrise from equatorial points such as Ecuador, the Congos, Uganda, Kenya and Indonesia and for part of the night in nearby months.

magellanic cloud

Below about 28° south the galaxy is always sufficiently above the horizon to be considered properly circumpolar, thus spring and autumn also are seasons of much-of-night visibility, and the magellanic cloud of magellanic cloud in June nearly coincides with closest proximity to the Magellanic cloud apparent position.

Measurements with the Hubble Space Telescope, announced in 2006, suggest the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds may be moving too quickly to be orbiting the Milky Way. [19] Astronomers discovered a new black hole inside the Large Magellanic Cloud in November 2021 using the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope in Chile.

Astronomers claim its gravity is influenced by a nearby star, which is about five times the mass of our Sun. [20] Geometry [ edit ] ESO's VISTA image of the LMC The Large Magellanic Cloud has a prominent central bar and spiral arm. [21] The central bar seems to be warped so that the east and west ends are nearer the Milky Way than the middle.

[22] In 2014, measurements from the Hubble Space Telescope made it possible to determine a rotation period of 250 million years.

[23] The LMC was long considered to be a planar galaxy that could be assumed to lie at a single distance from the Solar System. However, in 1986, Caldwell and Coulson [24] found that field Cepheid variables in the northeast lie closer to the Milky Way than those in the southwest.

From 2001 to 2002 this inclined geometry was confirmed by the same means, [25] by core helium-burning red clump stars, [26] and by the tip of the red giant branch. [27] All three papers find magellanic cloud inclination of ~35°, where a face-on galaxy has an inclination of 0°. Further work on the structure of the LMC using the kinematics of carbon stars showed that the LMC's disk magellanic cloud both thick [27] and flared, [28] [29] likely due to interactions with the SMC.

[29] Regarding the distribution of star clusters in the LMC, Schommer et al. [30] measured velocities for ~80 clusters and found that the LMC's cluster system has kinematics consistent with the clusters moving in a disk-like distribution. These results were confirmed by Grocholski et al., [31] who calculated distances to a sample of clusters and showed that the cluster system magellanic cloud distributed in the same plane as the field stars.

Distance [ edit ] Position of the Magellanic Clouds relative to the Milky Way. [32] Abbreviations: • GMW – Large Magellanic Cloud • KMW – Small Magellanic Cloud • GSP – Galactic South Pole • MSI – First hydrogen compression in the Magellanic Current • 3 – 30 Doradus • W – Wing of the KMW The green arrow indicates the direction of rotation of the Magellanic Clouds around the center of the Milky Way.

Distance to the LMC has been calculated using standard candles; Cepheid variables are one of the most popular. These have been shown to have a relationship between their absolute luminosity and the period over which their brightness varies.

However the variable of metallicity may also need to be taken as magellanic cloud component of this as consensus is this likely affects their period-luminosity relations. Unfortunately, those in the Milky Way typically used to calibrate the relation are more metal-rich than those found in the LMC. [33] Modern 8-meter-class optical telescopes have discovered eclipsing binaries throughout the Local Group. Parameters of these systems can be measured without mass or compositional assumptions.

The light echoes of supernova 1987A are also geometric measurements, without any stellar models or assumptions. In 2006, the Cepheid absolute luminosity was re-calibrated using Cepheid variables in the galaxy Messier magellanic cloud that cover a range of metallicities. [6] Using this improved calibration, they find an absolute distance modulus of ( m − M magellanic cloud 0 = 18.41 {\displaystyle (m-M)_{0}=18.41}or 48 kpc (160,000 light-years).

This distance has been confirmed by other authors. [7] [8] By cross-correlating different measurement methods, one can bound the distance; the residual errors are now less than the estimated size parameters of the LMC. The results of a study using late-type eclipsing binaries to determine the distance more accurately was published in the scientific journal Nature in March 2013.

A distance of 49.97 kpc (163,000 light-years) with an accuracy of 2.2% was obtained. [2] Features [ edit ] Two very different glowing gas clouds in the Large Magellanic Cloud, NGC 2014 (red) and NGC 2020 (blue) [34] Like many irregular galaxies, the LMC is rich in gas and dust, and is currently undergoing vigorous star formation activity. [35] It holds the Tarantula Nebula, the most active star-forming region in the Local Group.

NGC 1783 is one of the biggest globular clusters in the Large Magellanic Cloud [36] The LMC has a wide range of galactic objects and phenomena that make it known as an "astronomical treasure-house, a great celestial laboratory for the study of the growth and evolution of the stars", per Robert Burnham Jr. [37] Surveys of the galaxy have found roughly 60 globular clusters, 400 planetary nebulae and 700 open clusters, along with hundreds of thousands of giant and supergiant stars.

[38] Supernova 1987A—the nearest supernova in recent years—was in the Large Magellanic Cloud. The Lionel-Murphy SNR (N86) nitrogen-abundant supernova remnant was named by astronomers at the Australian National University's Mount Stromlo Observatory, acknowledging Australian High Court Justice Lionel Murphy's interest in science and its perceived resemblance to his large nose.

[39] A bridge of gas connects the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) with the LMC, which evinces tidal interaction between the galaxies. [40] The Magellanic Clouds have a common envelope of neutral hydrogen, indicating that they have been gravitationally bound for a long time. This bridge of gas is a star-forming site.

[41] X-ray sources [ edit ] Small and Large Magellanic Clouds over Paranal Observatory No X-rays above background were detected from either cloud during the September 20, 1966, Nike-Tomahawk rocket flight nor that of two days later.

[42] The second took off from Johnston Atoll at 17:13 UTC and reached an apogee of 160 km (99 mi), with spin-stabilization at 5.6 rps. [43] The LMC was not detected in the X-ray range 8–80 keV. [43] Another was launched from same atoll at 11:32 UTC on October 29, 1968, to scan the LMC for X-rays. [44] The first discrete X-ray source in Dorado was at RA 05 h 20 m Dec −69°, [44] [45] and it was the Large Magellanic Cloud.

[46] This X-ray source extended over about 12° and is consistent with the Cloud. Its emission rate between 1.5–10.5 keV for a distance of 50 kpc is 4 x 10 38 ergs/s. [44] An X-ray astronomy instrument was carried aboard a Thor missile launched from the same atoll on September 24, 1970, magellanic cloud 12:54 UTC and altitudes above 300 km (190 mi), to search for the Small Magellanic Cloud and to extend observation of the LMC.

[47] The source in the LMC appeared extended and contained star ε Dor. The X-ray luminosity (L x) over the range 1.5–12 keV was 6 × 10 31 W (6 × 10 38 erg/s).

[47] DEM L316A is located some 160,000 light-years away in the Large Magellanic Cloud [48] The Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) appears in the constellations Mensa and Dorado. LMC X-1 (the first X-ray source in the LMC) is at RA 05 h 40 m 05 s Dec −69° 45′ 51″, and is a high-mass X-ray binary (star system) source ( HMXB). [49] Of the first five luminous LMC X-ray binaries: LMC X-1, X-2, X-3, X-4 and A 0538–66 (detected by Ariel 5 at A 0538–66), LMC X-2 is the one that is a bright low-mass X-ray binary system ( LMXB) in the LMC.

[50] DEM L316 in the Cloud consists of two supernova remnants. [51] Chandra X-ray spectra show that the hot gas shell on the upper left has an abundance of iron. This implies that the upper-left SNR is the product of a Type Ia supernova; much lower such abundance in the lower remnant belies a Type II supernova. [51] A 16 ms X-ray pulsar is associated with SNR 0538-69.1.

[52] SNR 0540-697 was resolved using ROSAT. [53] Gallery [ edit ] • • ^ a b c d e f g "NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database".

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Learn about the major environmental problems facing our planet and what can be done about them! • SpaceNext50 Britannica presents SpaceNext50, From the race to the Moon to space stewardship, we explore a wide range of subjects that feed our curiosity about space! Magellanic Cloud, either of two satellite galaxies of the Milky Way Galaxy, the vast star system of which Earth is a minor component.

These companion galaxies were named for the Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan, whose crew discovered them during the first voyage around the world (1519–22). The Magellanic cloud Clouds were recognized early in the 20th century as companion objects to the Milky Way Galaxy. When American astronomer Edwin Hubble established the extragalactic nature of what are now called galaxies, it became plain that the Magellanic Clouds had to be separate systems.

Most of the globular cluster NGC 1850 consists of yellow stars; the bright white stars are magellanic cloud of a second, open cluster about 200 light-years beyond NGC 1850. This picture is a composite of images taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. R. Gilmozzi, Space Telescope Science Institute/European Space Agency; Shawn Ewald, JPL; and NASA N132D, remnants of a supernova in the Large Magellanic Cloud, as observed by the Hubble Space Telescope. Photo AURA/STScI/NASA/JPL (NASA photo # STScI-PF95-13) The Magellanic Clouds are irregular galaxies that share a gaseous envelope and lie about 22° apart in the sky near the south celestial pole.

One of them, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), is a luminous patch about 5° magellanic cloud diameter, and the other, the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), measures less than 2° across. The Magellanic Clouds are visible to the unaided eye in the Southern Hemisphere, but they cannot be observed from most northern latitudes. The LMC is about 160,000 light-years from Earth, and the SMC lies 190,000 light-years away.

The LMC and SMC are 14,000 and 7,000 light-years in diameter, respectively—smaller than magellanic cloud Milky Way Galaxy, which is about 140,000 light-years across.

It is now known that the nearest external galaxies are the Magellanic cloud Clouds, two patchy irregular objects visible in the. The Magellanic Clouds were formed at about the magellanic cloud time as the Milky Way Galaxy, approximately 13 billion years ago.

They are presently captured in orbits around the Milky Way Galaxy and have experienced several tidal encounters with each other and with the Galaxy. They contain numerous young stars and star clusters, as well as some much older stars. One of these star clusters contains R136a1, the most massive star known, with a mass 265 times that of the Sun. A knot in the central ring of Supernova 1987A, as observed by the Hubble Space Telescope in 1994 (left) and 1997 (right).The knot is caused by the collision of the supernova's blast wave with a slower-moving ring of matter it magellanic cloud ejected earlier.

The bright spot on the lower left is an unrelated star. Photo AURA/STScI/NASA/JPL (NASA photo # STScI-PRC98-08b) The Magellanic Clouds serve as excellent laboratories for the study of very active stellar formation and evolution. For example, the Tarantula Nebula (also called 30 Doradus) is an immense ionized-hydrogen region that contains many young, hot stars. The total mass of 30 Doradus is about one million solar masses, and its diameter is 550 light-years, making it the largest region of ionized gas in the entire Local Group of galaxies.

With the Hubble Space Telescope it is possible for astronomers to study the kinds of stars, star clusters, and nebulae magellanic cloud previously could be observed in great detail only in the Milky Way Galaxy.

Paul W. Hodgenone
• Andromeda Constellation • Antlia Constellation • Apus Constellation • Aquarius Constellation • Aquila Constellation • Ara Constellation • Aries Constellation • Auriga Constellation • Boötes Constellation magellanic cloud Caelum Constellation • Camelopardalis Constellation • Cancer Constellation • Canes Venatici Constellation • Canis Major Constellation • Canis Minor Constellation • Capricornus Constellation magellanic cloud Carina Constellation • Cassiopeia Constellation • Centaurus Constellation • Cepheus Constellation • Cetus Constellation • Chamaeleon Constellation • Circinus Constellation • Columba Constellation • Coma Berenices Constellation • Corona Australis Constellation • Corona Borealis Constellation • Corvus Constellation • Crater Constellation • Crux Constellation • Cygnus Constellation • Delphinus Constellation • Dorado Constellation • Draco Constellation • Equuleus Constellation • Eridanus Magellanic cloud • Fornax Constellation • Gemini Constellation • Grus Constellation • Hercules Constellation • Horologium Constellation • Hydra Constellation • Hydrus Constellation • Indus Constellation • Lacerta Constellation • Leo Constellation • Leo Minor Constellation • Lepus Constellation • Libra Constellation • Lupus Constellation • Lynx Constellation • Lyra Constellation • Mensa Constellation • Microscopium Constellation • Monoceros Constellation • Musca Constellation • Norma Constellation • Octans Constellation • Ophiuchus Constellation • Orion Constellation • Pavo Constellation • Pegasus Constellation • Perseus Constellation • Phoenix Constellation • Pictor Constellation • Pisces Constellation • Piscis Austrinus Constellation magellanic cloud Puppis Constellation • Pyxis Constellation • Reticulum Constellation • Sagitta Constellation • Sagittarius Constellation • Scorpius Constellation • Sculptor Constellation • Scutum Constellation • Serpens Constellation • Sextans Constellation • Taurus Constellation • Telescopium Magellanic cloud • Triangulum Australe Constellation • Triangulum Constellation • Tucana Constellation • Magellanic cloud Major Constellation • Ursa Minor Constellation • Vela Constellation • Virgo Constellation • Volans Constellation • Vulpecula Constellation • Constellation Map • Big Dipper • Orion’s Belt • Little Dipper • Southern Cross • Summer Triangle • Northern Cross • Cassiopeia’s W • Spring Triangle • Great Diamond • Winter Hexagon • Winter Triangle • Teapot • The Kite • Great Square of Pegasus • Water Jar • False Cross • The Sickle • Pointer Stars • Kemble’s Cascade • The Keystone • Messier Objects • Constellations by Month • January Constellations • February Constellations • March Constellations • April Constellations • May Constellations • June Constellations • July Constellations • August Constellations • September Constellations • October Constellations • November Constellations • December Constellations • Seasonal Constellations • Andromeda Constellation • Antlia Constellation • Apus Constellation • Aquarius Constellation • Aquila Constellation • Ara Constellation • Aries Constellation • Auriga Constellation • Boötes Constellation • Caelum Constellation • Camelopardalis Constellation • Cancer Constellation • Canes Venatici Constellation • Canis Major Constellation • Canis Minor Constellation • Capricornus Constellation • Carina Constellation • Cassiopeia Constellation • Centaurus Magellanic cloud • Cepheus Constellation • Cetus Constellation • Chamaeleon Constellation • Circinus Constellation • Columba Constellation • Coma Berenices Constellation • Corona Australis Constellation • Corona Borealis Constellation • Corvus Constellation • Crater Constellation • Magellanic cloud Constellation • Cygnus Constellation • Delphinus Constellation • Dorado Constellation • Draco Constellation • Equuleus Constellation • Eridanus Constellation • Fornax Constellation • Gemini Constellation • Grus Constellation • Hercules Constellation • Horologium Constellation • Hydra Constellation • Hydrus Constellation • Indus Constellation • Lacerta Constellation • Leo Constellation • Leo Minor Constellation • Lepus Constellation • Libra Constellation • Lupus Constellation • Lynx Constellation • Lyra Constellation • Mensa Constellation • Microscopium Constellation • Monoceros Constellation • Musca Constellation • Norma Constellation • Octans Constellation • Ophiuchus Constellation • Orion Constellation • Pavo Constellation • Pegasus Constellation • Perseus Constellation • Phoenix Constellation • Pictor Constellation • Pisces Constellation • Piscis Austrinus Constellation • Puppis Constellation • Pyxis Constellation • Reticulum Constellation • Sagitta Constellation • Sagittarius Constellation • Scorpius Constellation • Sculptor Constellation • Scutum Constellation • Serpens Constellation • Sextans Constellation • Taurus Constellation • Telescopium Constellation • Triangulum Australe Constellation • Triangulum Constellation • Tucana Constellation • Ursa Major Constellation • Ursa Minor Constellation • Vela Constellation • Virgo Constellation • Volans Constellation • Vulpecula Constellation • Constellation Map • Big Dipper • Orion’s Belt • Little Dipper • Southern Cross • Summer Triangle • Northern Cross • Cassiopeia’s W • Spring Triangle • Great Diamond • Winter Hexagon • Winter Triangle • Teapot • The Kite • Great Square of Pegasus • Water Jar • False Cross • The Sickle • Pointer Stars • Kemble’s Cascade • The Keystone • Messier Objects • Constellations by Month • January Constellations • February Constellations • March Constellations • April Constellations • May Constellations • June Constellations • July Constellations • August Constellations • September Constellations • October Constellations • November Constellations • December Constellations • Seasonal Constellations The Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) is a dwarf irregular galaxy located on the border between the constellations Dorado and Mensa.

The galaxy is believed to be a satellite of the Milky Way and a magellanic cloud of the Local Group of galaxies, which includes about 30 galaxies that are loosely bound together by their gravitation.

The Large Magellanic cloud lies an an approximate distance of 163,000 light years, or just under 50 kiloparsecs from Earth. Covering magellanic cloud degrees of the sky, the Large Magellanic Cloud is quite large in size, as its name indicates, and easy to find without binoculars for observers in the southern hemisphere. This image shows the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy in infrared light as seen by the Herschel Space Observatory, a European Space Agency-led mission with important NASA contributions, and NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope.

In the instruments’ combined data, this nearby dwarf galaxy looks like a fiery, circular outburst. Rather than fire, however, those ribbons are actually giant ripples of dust spanning tens or hundreds of light-years. Significant fields of star formation are noticeable in the center, just left of center and at right. The brightest center-left region is called 30 Doradus, or the Tarantula Nebula, for its appearance in visible light.

The colors in this image indicate temperatures in the dust that permeates the Cloud. Colder regions show where star formation is at its earliest stages or is shut off, while warm expanses point to new stars heating surrounding dust.

The coolest areas and objects appear in red, corresponding to infrared light taken magellanic cloud by Herschel’s Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver at 250 microns, or millionths of a meter. Herschel’s Photodetector Array Camera and Spectrometer fills out the mid-temperature bands, shown here in green, at 100 and 160 microns. The warmest spots appear in blue, courtesy of 24- and 70-micron data from Spitzer.

Magellanic cloud ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI It is the fourth largest galaxy in the Local Group, after Andromeda Galaxy, the Milky Way, and Triangulum Galaxy. The LMC is also one of very few galaxies that are visible to the unaided eye. Magellanic cloud galaxy appears as a faint cloud more than 20 times the width of the full Moon.

magellanic cloud

The visible part of the Large Magellanic Cloud is about 17,000 light years across. Along with the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), the LMC appears like a piece of the Milky Way that has broken off, when in fact both Magellanic Clouds are separate small galaxies. Both Magellanic Clouds are companions to our galaxy. The Large Magellanic Cloud is orbiting the Milky Way and is gravitationally bound to it. It is the third nearest galaxy to the Milky Way, with only the Sagittarius Dwarf Spheroidal galaxy in Sagittarius constellation and the Canis Major Dwarf Galaxy in Canis Major lying closer, at 16 and 12.9 kiloparsecs, respectively.

(The status of the Canis Major Dwarf as a galaxy is under dispute.) The Large Magellanic Cloud is often listed as an irregular type galaxy because of its appearance, which is likely the result of the galaxy’s tidal interactions with the Milky Way and the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), located in Tucana constellation. The LMC has a prominent bar in its central region, which indicates that it may have previously been a barred spiral galaxy.

The Magellanic Clouds are connected by a bridge of gas, which is a region of active star formation between the two galaxies. The bridge indicates that the Magellanic Clouds are tidally interacting.

The galaxies also have have a common envelope of neutral hydrogen, which means that magellanic cloud have been gravitationally bound to each other for a very long time. The Small Magellanic Cloud is more distant from us, lying at a distance of about 200,000 light years from Earth. The Large Magellanic Cloud (14,000 light years across) has twice the diameter of the Magellanic cloud Magellanic Cloud (7,000 light years), but is signficantly smaller than the Milky Way (100,000 light years).

NGC 2014 and NGC 2020 – ESO’s Very Large Telescope has captured a detailed view of a star-forming region in the Large Magellanic Cloud — one of the Milky Way’s satellite galaxies.

This sharp image reveals two glowing clouds of gas. NGC 2014 (right) is irregularly shaped and red and its neighbour, NGC 2020, is round and blue. These odd and very different forms were both sculpted by powerful stellar winds from exceptionally hot newborn stars that also radiate into the gas, causing it to glow brightly.

Image: ESO Finding the Large Magellanic Cloud is not difficult for observers in the southern hemisphere. For those living below latitude 20°S, the galaxy is circumpolar, which magellanic cloud that it can be seen every night throughout the year if the sky is clear. The LMC is located about 22 degrees from the South Celestial Pole and stretches across an area approximately 9 by 11 degrees on the border between Dorado and Mensa. The easiest way to find the galaxy is by drawing an imaginary line from Sirius past the right side of Canopus and follow the line to the LMC.

In northern magellanic cloud, the Large Magellanic Cloud can be seen south of latitude 20°N. The galaxy is not easy to observe because even when it does appear above the southern horizon, it only appears very low in the sky. The LMC is best seen in the evenings from December to April, when the constellation Orion also reaches its highest point in the sky.

Facts The Large Magellanic Cloud has a mass roughly 10 billion times that of the Sun, which makes the galaxy a hundred times less massive than the Milky Way.

The LMC has an estimated rotation rate of 250 million years. Astronomers calculated this by tracking the motion of the stars within the galaxy sideways with respect to the plane of the sky.

This was the first time this type of measuring was used for a galaxy. This image from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope shows the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy to our own Milky Way galaxy. The infrared image, a mosaic of 300,000 individual tiles, offers astronomers a unique chance to study the lifecycle of stars and dust in a single galaxy. Nearly one million objects are revealed for the first time in this Spitzer view, which represents about a 1,000-fold improvement in sensitivity over previous space-based missions.

Most of the new objects are dusty stars of various ages populating the Large Magellanic Cloud; the rest are thought to be background galaxies. Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/M. Meixner (STScI) & the SAGE Legacy Team With a diameter spanning approximately 14,000 light years, the LMC is the fourth largest galaxy in the Local Group, smaller in size only than the Andromeda Galaxy ( Messier 31), the Milky Way, and the Triangulum Galaxy (Messier 33).

A hypothetical observer looking at the Milky Way from a planet within the Magellanic cloud Magellanic Cloud would be treated to quite a spectacle.

magellanic cloud

With an apparent magnitude of -2.0, the Milky Way would appear more than 14 times brighter than the LMC appears to us, and would span roughly 36° of the sky, which is more than 70 full Moons in width. The Large Magellanic Cloud was considered to be the magellanic cloud external galaxy to our own until 1994, when astronomers discovered the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy, which is only 80,000 light years distant.

The Magellanic Clouds have both been greatly distorted as a result of tidal interaction with our galaxy, the Milky Way. The three galaxies are connected by trails of neutral hydrogen. The gravity of magellanic cloud Magellanic Clouds has affected the Milky Way, too, distorting the outer regions of our magellanic cloud disk. The LMC is magellanic cloud classified as a Magellanic-type dwarf spiral galaxy because it has a central bar and a spiral arm, but it is sometimes considered an irregular galaxy because of its unusual shape.

The galaxy’s central bar appears magellanic cloud, with its east and west ends closer to the Milky Way than the middle. The galaxy is inclined at 35°. (A galaxy appearing face-on to an observer on Earth would have an inclination of 0°.) The Small Magellanic Cloud, also an irregular dwarf galaxy, shows signs of a bar structure, too, and is also frequently reclassified as a Magellanic spiral.

Seen from the southern skies, the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds (the LMC and SMC, respectively) are bright patches in the sky. These two irregular dwarf magellanic cloud, together with our Milky Way Galaxy, belong to the so-called Local Group of galaxies. Astronomers once thought that the two Magellanic Clouds orbited the Milky Way, but recent research suggests this is not the case, and that they are in fact on their first pass by the Milky Way.

The LMC, lying at a distance of 160 000 light-years, and its neighbour the SMC, some 200 000 light-years away, are among the largest distant objects we can observe with the unaided eye. Both galaxies have notable bar features across their central discs, although the very strong tidal forces exerted by the Milky Way have distorted the galaxies considerably.

The mutual gravitational pull of the three interacting galaxies has drawn out long trails of neutral hydrogen that interlink the three galaxies. Image: ESO/S. Brunier The Large and Small Magellanic Clouds are separated by about 21° in the sky.

The real distance between the galaxies is approximately 75,000 light years. The estimated number of stars in the Large Magellanic Cloud is 10 billion, which is roughly a tenth of the Milky Way’s mass. The Magellanic Clouds were formed roughly at the same time as our galaxy, some 13 magellanic cloud years ago. The galaxies are believed to have originally formed as barred spirals.

They are currently drawn by the larger Milky Way into its orbit and distorted by the gravitational interactions. What is unusual about these two galaxies is that, unlike most satellites, which are stripped of gas by their larger neighbours, the Magellanic Clouds still appear quite radiant, with enough gas to keep forming new stars. Astronomers have suggested that the two small galaxies have been spared the effect of the tidal encounter because they are speeding past the Milky Way at an unusually high speed, not really giving the larger galaxy a chance to strip them of their gas supply.

Tarantula Nebula – Magellanic cloud 2070, photo: ESO They are thought by some to only have come so close to the Milky Way some 200 million years ago, and that our galaxy has not really affected them as much as previously thought. Furthermore, recent studies indicate that the Magellanic Clouds have been periodically approaching each other every few billion years and that the starburst activity was sparked by a collision between them.

The larger galaxy is believed to have drawn millions of stars from the smaller one. The Milky Way will probably eventually consume the Magellanic Clouds, but it is difficult to predict when. The two galaxies closer to us than the Magellanic Clouds will likely collide with the Milky Way first. Map This unique image shows AB7, one of the magellanic cloud excitation nebulae in the Magellanic Clouds (MCs), two satellite galaxies of magellanic cloud own Milky Way.

AB7 is a binary star, consisting of one WR-star — highly evolved massive star – and a mid-age massive companion of spectral type O. These exceptional stars have very strong stellar winds: they continuously eject energetic particles — like the “solar wind” from the Sun — but some 10 to 1,000 million times more intensely than our star!

These powerful winds exert an enormous pressure on the surrounding interstellar material and forcefully shape those clouds into “bubbles”, well visible in the photos by their blue colour. AB7 is particularly remarkable: the associated huge nebula and HeII region indicate that this star is one of the, if not the, hottest WR-star known so far, with a surface temperature in excess of 120,000 degrees !

Just outside this nebula, a small network of green filaments is visible — they are the remains of another supernova. Image: ESO These include globular and open clusters, planetary nebulae, and diffuse nebulae. The galaxy contains roughly 400 planetary nebulae, 60 globular clusters, and 700 open clusters. The most famous nebula found in the galaxy is the Tarantula Nebula (NGC 2070), the most active starburst region in the Local Group of galaxies.

The nebula spans about 700 light years and, if it were as close to us as the Orion Nebula, the Tarantula would appear 55 times larger than the full Moon in the sky.

Another notable star-forming region in the LMC is LHA 120-N 11. The Large Magellanic Cloud was the site of the nearest observed supernova since the invention of the telescope.

First detected on February 24, 1987, SN 1987A was the brightest supernova seen from Earth in over four centuries. It was classified as a peculiar Type II supernova and was one of the most interesting deep sky objects for astronomers and astrophysicists to observe in the late 20th century.

LHA magellanic cloud 11 in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Nearly 200 000 light-years from Earth, the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy of the Milky Way, floats in space, in a long and slow dance around our galaxy. As the Milky Way’s gravity gently tugs on its neighbour’s gas clouds, they collapse to form new stars.

In turn, these light up the gas clouds in a kaleidoscope of colours, visible in this image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. Image: NASA, ESA. Acknowledgement: Josh Lake A supernova remnant, SNR N86, also known as the Lionel-Murphy SNR, is a nitrogen-abundant remnant, also found in the Large Magellanic Cloud. The object was named after Australian High Court Justice Lionel Murphy, to acknowledge his interest in science and because it resembled a cartoonist’s drawing of his nose.

One of the clusters in the Large Magellanic Cloud contains R136a1, currently the most massive and most luminous star known.

R136a1 has a mass 265 times that of the Sun and a luminosity of magellanic cloud Suns. The star belongs to the super star cluster R136, located near the Tarantula Nebula. The LMC is also home to WOH G64, one of the largest stars known. Mythology The Large Magellanic Cloud is too far south to be associated with any magellanic cloud northern myths, but has considerable cultural significance in countries in the southern hemisphere.

LH 95 stellar nursery in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Image: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration The galaxy is located next to the constellation Mensa, which was named after the Table Mountain in South Africa. (Mensa means “table” in Latin.) In South Africa, the LMC is associated with a puff of smoke from a pipe-smoking contest held on the mountain. In Australian Aboriginal culture, the Large Magellanic Cloud represents the campsite of an old man, while his wife’s campsite is represented by the Small Magellanic Cloud.

The couple, known by the joint name of Jukara, were said to be too old to feed themselves, so other star beings would bring them fish from the celestial river represented by the Milky Way. History The first known mention of the LMC was by the Persian astronomer Al Sufi In his Book of Fixed Stars (964 AD).

Al Sufi called the object al-Bakr, which means “the sheep,” in a phrase meaning “the sheep of the southern Arabs.” He mentioned that the LMC could not be seen from Baghdad and northern Arabia, but is visible from Arabia’s southernmost point, the strait of Bab el Mandeb (latitude 12°15′ N). This broad vista of young stars and gas clouds in our neighbouring galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud, was captured by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS).

This magellanic cloud is named LHA 120-N 11, informally known as N11, and is one of the most active star formation regions in the nearby Universe. This picture is a mosaic of ACS data from five different positions and covers a region about six arcminutes across.

Image: NASA, ESA and Jesús Maíz Apellániz (Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía, Spain) The first Europeans to observe the Magellanic Clouds were Italian explorers Peter Martyr d’Anghiera and Andrea Corsali in the late 15th century. Antonio Pigafetta, who went on Ferdinand Magellan’s expedition to circumnavigate the world from 1519 to 1522 also noted the objects.

The Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan was the one responsible for bringing the Large Magellanic Cloud into common western knowledge, which is why the galaxy was later named after him. The LMC is mentioned in his writings describing his voyage in 1519. Magellan passed during that expedition in the Philippines, but his crew brought the documentation of the discovery back home to Europe.

The two galaxies, however, did not get named after Magellan until much later. Johann Bayer called the galaxies Nubecula Major and Nubecula Minor in his Uranometria (1603), and the French astronomer Lacaille called them le Grand Nuage and le Petit Nuage, magellanic cloud “the large cloud” and “the small cloud.” DEM L 106 – ‘Double Bubble’ of Gas and Dust in the Large Magellanic Cloud.

Image: NASA and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA) Amerigo Vespucci mentioned the object in a letter about his third voyage, around 1503-4. In the letter, he describes “three Canopes, two bright and one obscure.” The “obscure” referred to the Coalsack Nebula in the southern constellation Crux and the “bright” to the Magellanic Magellanic cloud.

The American astronomer Edwin Hubble was the one to establish the extragalactic nature of the galaxies, which made it clear that the Magellanic Clouds were separate objects.

magellanic cloud

Large Magellanic Cloud Constellation: Dorado/ Mensa Type: SB(s)m Coordinates: 05h 23m 34.5s (right ascension), -69°45’22” (declination) Distance: 162,980 light years (49.97 kiloparsecs) Apparent magnitude: 0.9 Apparent dimensions: 10.75° × 9.17° Diameter: 14,000 light years Designations: Large Magellanic Cloud, LMC, ESO 56- G 115, PGC 17223, Nubecula Major Tags: Andromeda Galaxy Canis Major Dwarf Galaxy Magellanic cloud Coalsack Nebula Large Magellanic Cloud LHA 120-N 11 Local Group Magellanic Clouds Milky Way NGC 2014 NGC 2020 NGC 2070 Nubecula Major R136a1 Sagittarius Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxy Sirius Small Magellanic Cloud SNR N86 Supernova 1987A Tarantula Nebula Triangulum Galaxy

What is Magellanic Clouds ?




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