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NGC 6872 (16,143 of 18,816)


oc gc pln bn dn gx gxcl ast aka lost




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NGC 6872

NGC 6872, VV 297a, AM 2011-705, ESO 73-32, LEDA 64413, SGC 201142-7055.3, h 3816, GC 4549

RA: 20h 16m 56s
Dec: −70° 46′ 3″

Con: Pavo
Ch: MSA:1529, U2:457, SA:26


(reference key)

Type: galaxies (interacting), SB

Mag: B=12.45, V=11.59

Size: 6.309′ x 1.445′
PA: 66°

Historical observations

John Herschel (1847) Cape Observations

Discovered by Sir John Herschel at the Cape of Good Hope with an 18-inch f/13 speculum telescope. He recorded it as "F, R, glbM, 30 arcseconds, has a vS star preceding; first of four." His next record reads: "F, E, 40 arcseconds long, has a star 9m 10.5 seconds preceding." The four object mentioned are NGC 6872, NGC 6876, NGC 6877 & NGC 6880.

Published comments

Bergwall et.al. (1978)

Bergwall et.al. (1978(Astron. Astrophys. Suppl. 33, 243-255) gives this galaxy's B-magnitude in the Johnson system as 13.4. They remark: "The very large dimension and general morphology indicate mass loss due to interaction with ESO 073-IG 33 [IC 4970]. Associated (?) with ESO 073-IG 35 [NGC 6876], ESO 073-IG 36 [NGC 6877], ESO 073-IG 37 [NGC 6880] and ESO 073-IG 38 [IC 4981]."

Sandage, A. (1975)

Sandage (1975(Astrophysical Journal, 202, 563-582) notes that this galaxy is a member of the Pavo Group. Members include NGC 6872, NGC 6876, NGC 6877, NGC 6880, IC 4960, IC 4967 & IC 4970. NGC 6782 & IC 4970 are background members.

Reynolds, J.H. (1921)

Reynolds, J.H. (1921) The spiral nebulae in the zone 40° to 90° (from the Franklin-Adams Plates). MNRAS, 81, 598.

Table, p601. 3x1, "F, 4 sn near"

Stewart (1908) Ann.Harv.Coll.Obs., 60 (6)

Table IV: 2-br spiral the f. branch shows condensations into hazy stars; also deviates from its course near another F *.

de Vaucouleurs, G. (1956)

De Vaucouleurs (1956) "Survey of bright galaxies south of -35° declination", Mem. Mount Stromlo, No. 13. (photographic study, plates taken with the 30-inch Reynolds reflector, 20-inch diaphragm); List II, p 68-73. Notes: "is 2' x 1' in MN 81, 1921, 601. Has long anomalous straight arm, probably due to interaction with IC 4970."

Sulentic & Tifft (1973)

The RNGC (Sulentic and Tifft 1973) notes that this is a galaxy.

Photo index

Photo Index by Jim Lucyk: Sky&Tel. 8/81 p116, Cat.of South.Peculiar Gal.and Ass. Vol 2 (Arp&Madore, 1987) p1.1, Cat.of South.Peculiar Gal.and Ass. Vol 2 (Arp&Madore, 1987) p23.3.

Modern observations

Bennett, Jack (1979)

Jack Bennett wrote in MNASSA, Vol 38, No 7-10, October 1979, p45: "NGC 6872 has recently been found to probably be the largest spiral galaxy known . . Readers may be interested to know that under favourable conditions this distant object can be seen with a 20cm Celestron telescope. With a magnification of 80 it appears as a faint irregular blur which apparently represents the luminous central region. There is a 9th magnitude foreground star a few seconds of arc preceding the centre. Attempts to glimpse this galaxy with telescopes of smaller aperture have been unsuccessful. About 7 or 8 minutes of arc South following the object is a smaller, roughly circular blur identified as galaxy NGC 6876. This is more easily seen and must undoubtedly be brighter than the 13th magnitude given in the RNGC."

Brian Skiff

IC 4970

ESO: pa23.

15cm - Wmost of grp. 140x: m11 * on W side, halo reaches 2/3 way to *. ~circ,

mod even concen to mod br sub*ar nuc. I4970 is vsm 10" spot on N side

of -72, sharply concen. BS, 8Nov1993, LCO.

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