|NGC 4038 & NGC 4039 "Ringtail Galaxy": Interacting Galaxies (Corvus) RA: 12h 01.9m / DEC: -18° 54'.5|
Instrument: 10-inch Starfinder
Slew about 3.5 degrees west-southwest from 2.6 magnitude Gamma (4) Corvi and you'll stumble over NGC 4038 and NGC 4039. Collectively known as the "Ringtail," these are gravitationally interacting galaxies.
Both appear quite misshapen in the 10-inch Starfinder Newtonian. NGC 4038 is roughly 3'x1'.5 in size, aligned east-to-west and listed in the RC3 with a 10.9 photographic magnitude. 11.1 (P) magnitude NGC 4039 covers 2'.5x1'.0 along more of a northeast-southwest axis. Photographic magnitude objects are typically 0.8 to 1.3 magnitude brighter in the visual band. This suggests visual brightnesses in the 10.0 to 10.3 magnitude range for this pair. No hint of ring-tail structure is seen in my 10-inch Newtonian.
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Revised: April 4, 2003 [WDF]