Messier 83

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Messier 83
M83 - Southern Pinwheel.jpg
ESO view of barred spiral galaxy Messier 83[1]
Observation data (J2000 epoch)
Right ascension 13h 37m 00.919s[2]
Declination−29° 51′ 56.74″[2]
Helio radial velocity508 km/s[4]
Distance15.2 Mly (4.66 Mpc)[4]
Apparent magnitude (V)7.54[5]
Apparent size (V)12′.9 × 11′.5[6]
Other designations
Southern Pinwheel Galaxy, NGC 5236, PGC 48082, UGCA 366,[7]
See also: Galaxy, List of galaxies

Messier 83 or M83, also known as the Southern Pinwheel Galaxy and NGC 5236, is a barred spiral galaxy[8] approximately 15 million light-years away in the constellation Hydra. Nicolas Louis de Lacaille discovered M83 on February 23, 1752 at the Cape of Good Hope.[9] Charles Messier added it to his catalogue of nebulous objects (now known as the Messier Catalogue) in March 1781.[9] This is one of the closest and brightest barred spiral galaxies in the sky, making it visible with binoculars.[10] Its nickname of the Southern Pinwheel derives from its resemblance to the Pinwheel Galaxy (M101).

This is a massive, grand design spiral galaxy.[11] The morphological classification of NGC 5236 in the De Vaucouleurs system is SAB(s)c,[3] where the 'SAB' denotes a weak-barred spiral, '(s)' indicates a pure spiral structure with no ring, and 'c' means the spiral arms are loosely wound.[12] The peculiar dwarf galaxy NGC 5253 lies near M83,[13] and the two likely interacted within the last billion years resulting in starburst activity in their central regions.[11]

The star formation rate in M83 is higher along the leading edge of the spiral arms, as predicted by density wave theory.[14] NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer project reported finding large numbers of new stars in the outer reaches of the galaxy – 20 kpc from the center. It had hitherto been thought that these areas lacked the materials necessary for star formation.[15][16] Six supernovae have been observed in M83: SN 1923A, SN 1945B, SN 1950B, SN 1957D,[17] SN 1968L and SN 1983N.

M83 is at the center of one of two subgroups within the Centaurus A/M83 Group, a nearby galaxy group.[18] Centaurus A is at the center of the other subgroup. These are sometimes identified as one group[19][20] and sometimes as two.[21] However, the galaxies around Centaurus A and the galaxies around M83 are physically close to each other, and both subgroups appear not to be moving relative to each other.[22]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "A galaxy with two hearts". ESA/Hubble Picture of the Week. Retrieved 18 January 2014.
  2. ^ a b Skrutskie, M. F.; et al. (February 2006). "The Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS)". The Astronomical Journal. 131 (2): 1163–1183. Bibcode:2006AJ....131.1163S. doi:10.1086/498708.
  3. ^ a b c de Vaucouleurs, G.; et al. (1991). "Third reference catalogue of bright galaxies". 9. New York: Springer-Verlag.
  4. ^ a b Tully, R. Brent; et al. (August 2016). "Cosmicflows-3". The Astronomical Journal. 152 (2): 21. arXiv:1605.01765. Bibcode:2016AJ....152...50T. doi:10.3847/0004-6256/152/2/50. 50.
  5. ^ Armando, Gil de Paz; Boissier, Samuel; Madore, Barry F.; Seibert, Mark; Joe, Young H.; et al. (2007). "The GALEX Ultraviolet Atlas of Nearby Galaxies". Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series. 173 (2): 185–255. arXiv:astro-ph/0606440. Bibcode:2007ApJS..173..185G. doi:10.1086/516636.
  6. ^ "NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database". Results for NGC 5236. Retrieved 8 December 2006.
  7. ^ "M 83". SIMBAD. Centre de données astronomiques de Strasbourg. Retrieved 29 November 2009.
  8. ^ "Multimedia Gallery: M83 – Southern Pinwheel Galaxy". NASA/JPL-Caltech/WISE Team. 25 June 2010.
  9. ^ a b Jones, K. G. (1991). Messier's Nebulae and Star Clusters (2nd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-37079-0.
  10. ^ "M 83". 11 October 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  11. ^ a b Calzetti, Daniela; Conselice, Christopher J.; Gallagher, John S., III; Kinney, Anne L. (August 1999). "The Structure and Morphology of the Ionized Gas in Starburst Galaxies: NGC 5253/5236". The Astronomical Journal. 118 (2): 797–816. arXiv:astro-ph/9904428. Bibcode:1999AJ....118..797C. doi:10.1086/300972.
  12. ^ de Vaucouleurs, Gérard (April 1963). "Revised Classification of 1500 Bright Galaxies". Astrophysical Journal Supplement. 8: 31. Bibcode:1963ApJS....8...31D. doi:10.1086/190084.
  13. ^ Thim, Frank; et al. (June 2003), "The Cepheid Distance to NGC 5236 (M83) with the ESO Very Large Telescope", The Astrophysical Journal, 590 (1): 256–270, arXiv:astro-ph/0303101, Bibcode:2003ApJ...590..256T, doi:10.1086/374888
  14. ^ Silva-Villa, E.; Larsen, S. S. (January 2012). "The relation between surface star formation rate density and spiral arms in NGC 5236 (M 83)". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 537: 9. arXiv:1111.1249. Bibcode:2012A&A...537A.145S. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201117432. A145.
  15. ^ "Stellar Birth in the Galactic Wilderness". 16 April 2008. Retrieved 15 December 2018.
  16. ^ Dong, Hui; et al. (July 2008). "Spitzer Observations of Star Formation in the Extreme Outer Disk of M83 (NGC5236)". The Astronomical Journal. 136 (1): 479–497. arXiv:0804.3632. Bibcode:2008AJ....136..479D. doi:10.1088/0004-6256/136/1/479.
  17. ^ Romaniello, Martino; Patat, Ferdinando; Panagia, Nino; Sparks, William B.; Gilmozzi, Roberto; Spyromilio, Jason (August 2005), "Very Large Telescope FORS1 Imaging Polarimetry of M83 (NGC 5236). I. Search for Light Echoes from Historical Supernovae", The Astrophysical Journal, 629 (1): 250–258, arXiv:astro-ph/0505100, Bibcode:2005ApJ...629..250R, doi:10.1086/431470
  18. ^ Karachentsev, I. D.; et al. (2002). "New distances to galaxies in the Centaurus A group". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 385 (1): 21–31. Bibcode:2002A&A...385...21K. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20020042.
  19. ^ R. B. Tully (1988). Nearby Galaxies Catalog. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-35299-4.
  20. ^ Fouque, P.; Gourgoulhon, E.; Chamaraux, P.; Paturel, G. (1992). "Groups of galaxies within 80 Mpc. II – The catalogue of groups and group members". Astronomy and Astrophysics Supplement. 93: 211–233. Bibcode:1992A&AS...93..211F.
  21. ^ Garcia, A. (1993). "General study of group membership. II – Determination of nearby groups". Astronomy and Astrophysics Supplement. 100: 47–90. Bibcode:1993A&AS..100...47G.
  22. ^ Karachentsev, I. D. (2005). "The Local Group and Other Neighboring Galaxy Groups". Astronomical Journal. 129 (1): 178–188. arXiv:astro-ph/0410065. Bibcode:2005AJ....129..178K. doi:10.1086/426368.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: Sky map 13h 37m 00.9s, −29° 51′ 57″