NGC 1566

Coordinates: Sky map 04h 20m 00.4s, −54° 56′ 16″
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NGC 1566
A close-up image of NGC 1566 taken by the Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3.
Observation data (J2000 epoch)
Right ascension04h 20m 00.40200s[1]
Declination−54° 56′ 16.5781″[1]
Heliocentric radial velocity1,506.1 km/s[3]
Distance69 Mly (21.3 Mpc)[4]
Apparent magnitude (V)9.73±0.03[5]
Mass6.5×1010[4] M
Apparent size (V)8′.51 × 5′.37[6]
Other designations
PGC 14897[2]

NGC 1566, sometimes known as the Spanish Dancer,[7][8][9] is an intermediate spiral galaxy in the constellation Dorado, positioned about 3.5° to the south of the star Gamma Doradus.[10] It was discovered on May 28, 1826 by Scottish astronomer James Dunlop.[11] At 10th magnitude,[5] it requires a telescope to view. The distance to this galaxy remains elusive, with measurements ranging from 6 Mpc[12] up to 21 Mpc.[4]

This galaxy forms a member of the NGC 1566 subgroup of the Dorado Group, of which it is dominant and brightest member[13][14][15] (although Kilborn and colleagues (2005) listed it as second brightest member of the NGC 1566 group after NGC 1553). The X-ray emission from the group is dominated by the hot gas halo of this galaxy, which extends out to 29 kpc before merging with the background radiation.[16] The galaxy appears to be interacting with smaller members of its subgroup.[12] Radio emissions suggest the disk is asymmetrical and the neutral hydrogen gas shows a mild warp.[4]

The morphological classification of NGC 1566 is SAB(rs)bc,[4] which indicates a spiral galaxy with a weak bar structure around the nucleus (SAB), an incomplete ring around the bar (rs), and showing wound arms (bc). The spiral arms are strong and symmetrical.[12] The galactic plane is inclined at an angle of 31°± to the line of sight to the Earth and the long axis is oriented along a position angle of 219°±.[4] The northwest side of the galaxy is more strongly obscured by dust, suggesting it is the near side.[12] The mass ratio of neutral hydrogen gas to the mass of the stars is 0.29, which is on the high side for a galaxy of this mass.[4] Absolute luminosity is 3.7×1010 L,[16] and is calculated to contain 1.4×1010 M of H I.[16]

NGC 1566 is an active galaxy with many features of a Seyfert type 1, although the exact type remains uncertain. It is one of the closest and brightest Seyfert galaxies. The mass of the supermassive black hole at the center is estimated at (1.3±0.6)×107 M. The proximity of the galaxy, along with strong spiral arms and an active nucleus, have made it the subject of much scientific study in the astronomy community.[12] It is the nearest known CL AGN galaxy.[17]

On June 19, 2010, Berto Monard from South Africa detected a magnitude 16 supernova 13 west and 22″ south of the center of NGC 1566.[18] It was designated SN 2010el[19] and was of type Iax.[20] A second supernova was discovered on 11 November 2021: SN 2021aefx (Type Ia, mag 12).[21]

Spanish Dancer Galaxy Twirls into View from NSF’s NOIRLab in Chile [22]


  1. ^ a b Brown, A. G. A.; et al. (Gaia collaboration) (August 2018). "Gaia Data Release 2: Summary of the contents and survey properties". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 616. A1. arXiv:1804.09365. Bibcode:2018A&A...616A...1G. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201833051. Gaia DR2 record for this source at VizieR.
  2. ^ a b "NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database". Results for NGC 1566. Retrieved 2007-04-01.
  3. ^ Meyer, M. J.; et al. (June 2004). "The HIPASS catalogue - I. Data presentation". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 350 (4): 1195–1209. arXiv:astro-ph/0406384. Bibcode:2004MNRAS.350.1195M. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2004.07710.x. S2CID 10336076.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Elagali, A.; et al. (August 2019). "WALLABY early science - III. An H I study of the spiral galaxy NGC 1566". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 487 (2): 2797–2817. arXiv:1905.09491. Bibcode:2019MNRAS.487.2797E. doi:10.1093/mnras/stz1448.
  5. ^ a b Gil de Paz, Armando; et al. (December 2007). "The GALEX Ultraviolet Atlas of Nearby Galaxies". The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series. 173 (2): 185–255. arXiv:astro-ph/0606440. Bibcode:2007ApJS..173..185G. doi:10.1086/516636. S2CID 119085482.
  6. ^ Paturel, G.; et al. (December 2003). "HYPERLEDA. I. Identification and designation of galaxies". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 412: 45–55. Bibcode:2003A&A...412...45P. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20031411.
  7. ^ "Spanish Dancer Galaxy - NGC 1566 - Billions and". Retrieved 2015-10-13.
  8. ^ "NGC 1566 Spanish Dancer Galaxy in Dorado | Amazing Sky Astrophotography by Alan Dyer". Retrieved 2015-10-13.
  9. ^ Chadwick, Stephen; Cooper, Ian (11 December 2012). Imaging the Southern Sky. Springer. p. 260. ISBN 978-1461447498.
  10. ^ Sinnott, Roger W.; Perryman, Michael A. C. (1997). Millennium Star Atlas. Vol. 1. Sky Publishing Corporation and the European Space Agency. ISBN 0-933346-84-0.
  11. ^ Seligman, Courney. "NGC 1566". Retrieved 2020-08-21.
  12. ^ a b c d e Slater, R.; et al. (January 2019). "Outflows in the inner kiloparsec of NGC 1566 as revealed by molecular (ALMA) and ionized gas (Gemini-GMOS/IFU) kinematics". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 621: 23. arXiv:1804.02054. Bibcode:2019A&A...621A..83S. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201730634. S2CID 85454930. A83.
  13. ^ de Vaucouleurs, Gérard (April 1, 1973), "Southern Galaxies.VI. Luminosity Distribution in the Seyfert Galaxy NGC 1566", Astrophysical Journal, 181: 31–50, Bibcode:1973ApJ...181...31D, doi:10.1086/152028
  14. ^ Huchra, John Peter; Geller, Margaret J. (June 15, 1982), "Groups of galaxies. I - Nearby groups", Astrophysical Journal, 257 (Part 1): 423–437, Bibcode:1982ApJ...257..423H, doi:10.1086/160000
  15. ^ Firth, P.; Evstigneeva, E. A.; Jones, J. B.; Drinkwater, M. J.; et al. (November 2006), "Kinematics, substructure and luminosity-weighted dynamics of six nearby galaxy groups", Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 372 (4): 1856–1868, arXiv:astro-ph/0608584, Bibcode:2006MNRAS.372.1856F, doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2006.10993.x, S2CID 18646500.
  16. ^ a b c Kilborn, Virginia A.; Koribalski, Bärbel S.; Forbes, Duncan A.; Barnes, David G.; et al. (January 2005), "A Wide-Field Hi Study of the NGC 1566 Group", Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 356 (1): 77–88, arXiv:astro-ph/0409743, Bibcode:2005MNRAS.356...77K, doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2004.08450.x
  17. ^ Xu, D. W.; Komossa, S.; Grupe, D.; Wang, J.; Xin, L. P.; Han, X. H.; Wei, J. Y.; Bai, J. Y.; Bon, E.; Cangemi, F.; Cordier, B.; Dennefeld, M.; Gallo, L. C.; Kollatschny, W.; Kong, De-Feng (2024). "Changing-Look Narrow-Line Seyfert 1 Galaxies, their Detection with SVOM, and the Case of NGC 1566". Universe. 10 (2): 61. doi:10.3390/universe10020061. ISSN 2218-1997.
  18. ^ Monard, L. A. G. (June 2010). Green, D. W. E. (ed.). "Supernova 2010el in NGC 1566". Central Bureau Electronic Telegrams. 2334: 1. Bibcode:2010CBET.2334....1M.
  19. ^ David Bishop. "Latest Supernovae". (International Supernovae Network). Retrieved 2010-06-21.
  20. ^ Takaro, Tyler; et al. (March 2020). "Constraining Type Iax supernova progenitor systems with stellar population age dating". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 493 (1): 986–1002. arXiv:1901.05461. Bibcode:2020MNRAS.493..986T. doi:10.1093/mnras/staa294.
  21. ^ Transient Name Server entry for SN 2021aefx. Retrieved 4 January 2023.
  22. ^ Spanish Dancer Galaxy Twirls into View from NSF’s NOIRLab in Chile Retrieved 30 January 2023.

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