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NGC 5174 (18,707 of 18,816)


oc gc pln bn dn gx gxcl ast aka lost




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NGC 5174

NGC 5174, III 45, h 1612, GC 3560

History and Accurate Positions for the NGC/IC Objects (Corwin 2004)

NGC 5174 = NGC 5162 (which see) and NGC 5175 are a pair of objects discovered by WH: "Two, mistaken for one; but 240 shewed (sic) them both. cL, vF." JH observed these twice; his description from his first observation (Sweep 120) is correct: "eF, E; involves a star at the south end, and has a star 6 mag 15 arcmin south and a few seconds preceding." His second (Sweep 242) more nearly matches his father's: "vF; two close together, or one E nearly in the meridian. A star 11 mag north."

Using LdR's 72-inch, Dreyer also "Found only one neb, vF, vS, stellar, no other neb found. A * 12m about 4 arcmin nf. The ground appeared milky round about." He goes on to comment, "h seems also to have seen but one neb, viz, 1612, his `* 11m n' may be my * 12 m..."

On the sky survey prints, it's clear that the southern of the pair is, as JH noted, a superposed star. Yet CGCG called this a "double" galaxy, and has managed to confuse a lot of modern observers.

It is vaguely possible, I suppose, that WH split the galaxy as happened with e.g. NGC 2442 and NGC 2443, and NGC 2903 and NGC 2905. In this case, the second nebula probably would be the faint HII region north-northwest of the nucleus. This was apparently seen by Swift (see his description under the note for NGC 5162). However, the superposed star is considerably brighter, and is the more likely candidate for NGC 5175.

Historical observations

William Herschel (c.1784)

Synonyms: H III-045

Discovered in 1784 by William Herschel with an 18.7-inch f/13 speculum telescope. He called it "Two. Mistaken for one, but 240 shewed them both. cL, vF." The other object is NGC 5175.

Published comments

Sulentic & Tifft (1973)

The RNGC (Sulentic and Tifft 1973) notes that this is a 13.5 mag galaxy. Their coded description reads S,WD,BM,SLDIFARMS SEV*SUP,5175 3'NF.

Contemporary observations

Richard Ford

2011 October, 29th Saturday


Instrument:12-inch Dobsonian Reflector Telescope.

Sky Conditions:The fainter parts of the Milky Way are barely visible with the naked eye.

Transparency Of The Sky:Haziness only visible on the horizon.

Seeing:Atmosphere stable with little interference.

Limiting Magnitude:4.9.

NGC 5174


Object Type:Galaxy.

First Impression:This object looks like a galaxy.

Location:Piscis Austrinus.


Chart Number:No.19(Extract taken out of "Atlas of the Night Sky").

Size:26mm Eyepiece:Field Of View:57'/16= 3.5'.

20mm Eyepiece:Field Of View:50'/14= 3.5'.

3.5'+ 3.5'= 7'.

7'/2= 3.5'.

Size in Arc Minutes:3.5'.


Major Axis:3.5'.

3.5'/3= 1.1'.

Minor Axis:1.1'.

Galaxy is 3.5'* 1.1'.

Brightness:Magnitude 12.6.

Brightness Profile:From the central outskirts of this galaxy the central nucleus grows brighter compared to the central outskirts of this galaxy.

Challenge Rating:Very Difficult.



This galaxy is well seen as an oval faint smudge of soft light at 75*.No elliptical structure is seen in this galaxy.This galaxy however lies in a region where 8th to 9th magnitude stars are seen.Around the outskirts of this elusive galaxy I have found some areas of uneven brightness.

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