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The Dynamical Evolution of Centaurus A

  • S. G. Vine
  • R. C. Thomson
Conference paper
Part of the International Astronomical Union / Union Astronomique Internationale book series (IAUS, volume 171)

Abstract

Centaurus A (NGC 5128) is a nearby Giant Elliptical (3.5Mpc, 1012 Solar Masses). It has a prominent dust-lane which has an axis of rotation orientated differently from that of the underlying galaxy. Close to it are two galaxies: NGC 5237 — a dwarf elliptical, and Fourcade-Figueroa — a low surface brightness irregular. We are investigating whether these three objects are the resulting components of a grazing interaction between a Giant Elliptical and a less massive spiral galaxy. We have conducted n-body simulations, modelling all components of the two original interacting galaxies. Preliminary results show that Cen A, its dust-lane, and NGC 5237 are consistent with this simulation model. Centaurus A exhibits many other features which are also indicative of a past interaction.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. G. Vine
    • 1
  • R. C. Thomson
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of AstronomyCambridgeUK

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