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NGC 4027, a Magellanic-type spiral galaxy

Date created: 1982-02-19

Tags: galaxy, spiral, AAT


This galaxy is of interest because of its similarity to the Large Magellanic Cloud, (LMC) our nearest extra-galactic neighbour.

Like the LMC, its light comes predominantly from young stars, which are hotter than the Sun and give the galaxy a bluish colour. However, because this galaxy is over 80 million light-years distant we see only the integrated light of millions of unresolved stars, rather than the individuals we see in the LMC. NGC 4027 has a somewhat distorted appearance and an elongated spiral arm, probably due to the gravitational effect of a smaller companion galaxy, not visible in this photograph but rather obvious on a much deeper image. NGC 4027 is less than half a degree south of the Antennae interacting galaxies.

Photograph made from plates taken in January 1982
Top left is NE. Image width is about 5 arc min.

Credit: David Malin

© Australian Astronomical Observatory