Messier 89

Messier 89

Messier 89[1]
Messier 89 by Hubble Space Telescope.
Observation data
Epoch J2000
Constellation Virgo
Right ascension 12h 35m 39.8s[2]
Declination +12° 33′ 23″[2]
Apparent dimension (V) 5.1 × 4.7 moa[2]
Apparent magnitude (V) 10.73[2]
Type E,[2] LINER,[2] HIISy2[2]
Heliocentric radial velocity 340 ± 4[2]km/s
Redshift 0.001134 ± 0.000014[2]
Galactocentric velocity 290 ± 5[2] km/s
Distance 50 ± 3 Mly (15.33 ± 0.92 Mpc)
Other designations
NGC 4552,[2] UGC 7760,[2] PGC 41968[2]
Database references
SIMBAD Search M89 data
See also: Galaxy, List of galaxies

Messier 89 (M89 for short, also known as NGC 4552) is an elliptical galaxy in the constellation Virgo. It was discovered by Charles Messier on March 18, 1781. M89 is a member of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies.[3]


Current observations indicate that M89 may be nearly perfectly spherical in shape. This is unusual, since all other known elliptic galaxies are relatively elongated ellipsoids. However, it is possible that the galaxy is oriented in such a way that it appears spherical to an observer on Earth but is in fact elliptical.

The galaxy also features a surrounding structure of gas and dust extending up to 150,000 light-years from the galaxy and jets of heated particles that extend 100,000 light-years outwards. This indicates that it may have once been an active quasar or radio galaxy.[4] It also has an extensive and complex system of shells and plumes surrounding it originated in one or several mergers.[5]

Chandra studies in the wavelength of the X-Rays show two ring-like structures of hot gas in M89's nucleus, suggesting an outburst there 1-2 million years ago[6] as well as ram-pressure stripping acting on the galaxy as it moves through Virgo's intracluster medium.[7]

M89 also has a large population of globular clusters. A 2006 survey estimates that there are 2,000 ± 700 globulars within 25′ of M89, compared to the estimated 150-200 thought to surround the Milky Way.[8]


  1. ^ J. L. Tonry; A. Dressler; J. P. Blakeslee; E. A. Ajhar; et al. (2001). "The SBF Survey of Galaxy Distances. IV. SBF Magnitudes, Colors, and Distances".  
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database". Results for NGC 4552. Retrieved 2006-10-24. 
  3. ^ Elliptical Galaxy M89 @ SEDS Messier pages
  4. ^ Messier Objects 81-90 @ Sea and Sky
  5. ^ Janowiecki, Steven; Mihos, J. Christopher; Harding, Paul; Feldmeier, John J.; et al. (2010). "Diffuse Tidal Structures in the Halos of Virgo Ellipticals".  
  6. ^ Machacek, M.; Nulsen, P. E. J.; Jones, C.; Forman, W. R. (2014). "Chandra Observations of Nuclear Outflows in the Elliptical Galaxy NGC 4552 in the Virgo Cluster".  
  7. ^ Machacek, M.; Jones, C.; Forman, W. R.; Nulsen, P. (2006). "Chandra Observations of Gas Stripping in the Elliptical Galaxy NGC 4552 in the Virgo Cluster".  
  8. ^ Tamura, Naoyuki; Sharples, Ray M.; Arimoto, Nobuo; Onodera, Masato; et al. (2006). "A Subaru/Suprime-Cam wide-field survey of globular cluster populations around M87 - I. Observation, data analysis and luminosity function".  

External links

  • SEDS: Messier Object 89
  • Messier 89 on WikiSky: DSS2, SDSS, GALEX, IRAS, Hydrogen α, X-Ray, Astrophoto, Sky Map, Articles and images