Questions regarding systems of large numbers of stars held together by gravity.

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Direction Names Within a Galaxy

Are there commonly used names for objective directions within a spiral galaxy? Central and peripheral describe objective directions, because the observer's frame of reference doesn't affect whether ...
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2answers
295 views

Do all the stars visible to the naked eye belong to Milky Way?

It is surprising that even late in 1920, people do not know there are galaxies besides the Milky Way. Does this mean that all the stars visible to the naked eye are near to us?
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2answers
123 views

How do I see more than just points in the sky?

I just bought a new telescope with these specifications: Aperture: 203 mm Focal Length: 1200 mm F/ratio: f/5.9 I usually use a 28 mm eyepiece, giving me about 42.5x magnification, but I also have ...
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24 views

How do people derive ionized gas mass from optical emission lines in a galaxy spectrum?

Suppose you had an optical spectrum of a galaxy, and you unambiguously detected emission lines from cooling ionized gas -- both forbidden lines like [O II] 3727AA and [O III] 4959,5007AA, as well as ...
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1answer
29 views

How can ionized emission line flux decrease as a function of increasing metallicity or abundance?

The chemical evolution of galaxies is an important way to learn about their formation and stellar/gaseous constituents. Many galaxies show narrow emission lines at optical wavelengths (3500-9000 ...
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1answer
56 views

Stellar systems: what is the difference between virial, dynamical and thermodynamic equilibrium?

I'm currently going through Binney & Tremaine (2008) on my own to learn about stellar dynamics. I also have been perusing additional online resources such as this scholarpedia wiki. Often when ...
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1answer
28 views

How do I modify redshifts to gain corrected line of sight velocities?

I'm currently trying to collect the data to run an N-body simulation for 11 of the galaxies in the Local Group where proper motions are known, however I don't understand how to get the required line ...
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2answers
80 views

Is the motion of the Sun around the Galaxy a result of gravitational pull?

Does the orbit of the sun (and other stars within the Milky way) around the galaxy result directly from radial gravitational force toward the objects in the center of the galaxy, or is there ...
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1answer
118 views

Is there a map of the galaxies?

I see that there are many maps of a single galaxy, the Milky Way, showing the positions of the stars within our galaxy. I could not find a map of Galaxies, however. Is there such a map? In lieu of ...
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1answer
33 views

Is there a strict chronological order that determines the shape of galaxies?

Assuming no collision happens, do all elliptical galaxies eventually become spiral? also when a galaxy becomes spiral or barred spiral, can it switch between these shapes or is it set forever?
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1answer
154 views

What are the 10 most abundant elements in the universe by number of atomic nuclei?

I've seen websites that show the ratios of the 10 most common elements but they compare them by relative mass. I think it's more interesting to know the relative abundances of atomic nuclei because ...
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1answer
167 views

How do we know galaxy GN-z11 is as far away as it is?

The news media recently reported that galaxy GN-z11, formed just 400 million years after the big bang, is much further away than originally thought at perhaps 13.2 billion light years. They say, ...
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22 views

Convergence of galaxies [duplicate]

What would happen to Earth and other planets after about millions of years at the time of convergence of milky way galaxy with andromeda galaxy? (Supposing the planets and the sun are still there and ...
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3answers
168 views

How does the concept of a universe with no center work?

I understand basically that the universe is homogenous (looks the same from every point) and I was told in my astro class that it's supposed to have no center, but how that works boggles my mind. I ...
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1answer
55 views

Procession of the Equinox

I just learned about procession of the equinox, i.e. the Earth's axis tilts one degree every 72 years. And it takes 72 years/degree x 360 degrees = 25,920 There are many theories to this, i.e. ...
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1answer
43 views

What methods exist to calculate the ellipticity of galaxies

What methods exist to calculate the ellipticity of galaxies and what are their drawbacks? I have asked this question about ellipticity in the SDSS but I want to know about general methods for cases ...
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2answers
67 views

visualisation of galaxy density

If I had a long stick that was millions of light years long, and with a width of about the Sun, and I then swiped it through the center of the milky way galaxy, what would the probability be of me ...
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1answer
74 views

What would be the outcome for life in our galaxy if the merger of the Milky Way and Andromeda creates a Quasar?

If predictions are correct, the Milky Way and Andromeda are set to collide in around 4 billion years. If, when this occurs, a Quasar is formed by matter being accreted to the common galactic center ...
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1answer
52 views

Why is it strange that outer stars are travelling with the same speed as inner while the total mass is also increasing?

Astronomers say that it's strange that the outer stars of a gallaxy are travelling with the same speed as the inner stars. Therefor they introduced dark matter to solve this strangeness. The theory ...
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51 views

How probably is it that galaxies will extinguish?

In the nebulaes of galaxies are stars born, but the gasses and dust they are made of comes from exploded stars (fe supernovas). So it looks like these processes can go on continuesly. But is that ...
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2answers
133 views

Why are stars more metallic closer as you move closer to the galactic bulge?

As I see it, most of the stars in the galactic bulge are Population I stars. However, as one moves farther from the galactic bulge, star metallicity decreases. In fact, halo stars are almost entirely ...
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1answer
59 views

Why there is no axis measurement when telling distance between objects in space ?

What's in upper part in our galaxy ? If space is 3 dimensional, what lies beneath solar system, or in upper part ? Why it seems from every graphical view of solar system / galaxy, everything is in one ...
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1answer
62 views

Obtaining stars vector position in relation to the center of the galaxy at a given date

How can someone obtain such vector, for stars in the Milky Way? Input should be star data (from a catalog, eg: Hipparcos) and Julian Date. Output should be a Vector Position (in pc) in relation to ...
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1answer
92 views

What part of the milky way do we see from earth?

When looking up at the night sky, we can sometimes observe a bright band of stars stretching across it. I know this is our galaxy but exactly what are we looking at? Could we look at the centre of ...
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1answer
167 views

Why aren't new stars in Earth's relative proximity constantly discovered?

Okay, bear with me. In layman's terms: The estimates vary, but on a clear night, away from big cities, one can see up to 5000 stars in the sky. All those are in the Milky Way, but they're hardly ...
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1answer
93 views

How many stars are in the Sculptor Dwarf Galaxy?

The Sculptor Dwarf Galaxy is a small satellite Galaxy of the Milky Way. There are many such satellites galaxies and I'm trying to compile basic data on them. However, I can't find an estimate for the ...
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1answer
90 views

What is the scale of things you can see with gravitational lensing?

I'm trying to understand the examples of gravity lensing (using the general relativity property of large masses to bend light like a lens). Most of the examples I see are of some galaxy (presumably ...
3
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1answer
87 views

Does Dark Matter affect the motion of the Solar System?

Would dark matter have a similar effect on the Solar System as it does on the Milky Way? I'd imagine it could help hold together some of the Solar System bodies or at least affect their motion, right? ...
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1answer
112 views

How do we know which elements are in a galaxy spectra?

I know that each element has it's own distinct spectra (this is a good site that lists them: Periodic Table) but when looking at a spectra of a galaxy (or even a star) how do we match those elements ...
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1answer
108 views

Does the Sun orbit the Milky way in a (kind of) flat or inclined orbit or more of a sine wave? [duplicate]

I know it can't be a perfect ellipse or smooth orbit due to all the matter in every direction, and our Sun could be affected by a gravity assist of sorts if it passes close enough to another massive ...
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3answers
245 views

How do we know that our galaxy is a spiral galaxy?

I know that our galaxy is spiral in shape, but I'm wondering how the scientists found out that our galaxy has a spiral shape. I don't think we can see the entire galaxy from telescopes on Earth, ...
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0answers
32 views

How does one find the extinction coefficient of a particular galaxy?

I am doing photometry on a number of objects in a number of different galaxies. I need the extinction coefficients for these galaxies for various filters passes. Is there some database that displays ...
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2answers
75 views

Acceleration in Galaxies Collision

In the far future the Milky Way and Andromeda will collide. As far I know direct collision between large dense objects (black holes, stars, planets, etc.) is unlikely due to the relative "low density" ...
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1answer
79 views

Distribution of Stars in Milky Way and globular cluster analogy

Just a quick (and hopefully simple) question on the distribution of stars in the Milky Way and in globular clusters. I was wondering why it IS NOT possible to describe the distributions of stars in ...
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1answer
87 views

What is a Seyfert galaxy?

I know Seyfert galaxies are types of active galaxies, but I do not understand what separates them from other types of active galaxies. Are they brighter/not as bright as other types of active ...
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1answer
147 views

What if our galaxy didn't have a SMBH?

From my understanding, it is believed that almost every big galaxy and especially spiral galaxies have supermassive black holes (SMBH's) at the center. Also, from what I've read, a SMBH isn't required ...
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1answer
80 views

Radial Density Profile Equation [closed]

The Virgo Galaxy Cluster has a mass of $10^{14} M_{\odot}$ and its centre is $16Mpc$ from Earth. The large elliptical galaxy $M87$ lies at the centre of the Virgo cluster. $M87$ has a supermassive ...
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1answer
468 views

What is a Galactic Eclipse?

It is said that when our solar system passes through the dark rift of galaxy (what is it exactly?), a phenomenon named 'Galactic Eclipse' happens, when our solar system witnesses 3 days of darkness. ...
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2answers
184 views

Are those noise or stars?

So there is this huge picture by Hubble. Better yet, with the zoom tool And if you zoom to the maximum level, you can see a seemingly uniformly distributed dots of orange and blue. Are those ...
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3answers
204 views

Are there heavenly bodies between galaxies?

I do understand that galaxies were formed in the famous Big Bang. However, I also understand that if such an explosion occurs in empty space it will never form distinct galaxies, it should more or ...
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1answer
55 views

Which structure is represented in this video (if any)?

I know this is not supposed to be precise since it is just a movie but I would suppose it is based on real things. In the Contact movie intro https://youtu.be/EWwhQB3TKXA?t=1m I think the Milk Way is ...
2
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1answer
89 views

Can a galaxy splits into multiple galaxies?

Is there any naturally occurring event powerful enough that can cause a galaxy regardless of shape and size to divide itself into two or more smaller galaxies?
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2answers
109 views

How clearly would I be able to see a galaxy with the naked eye if viewed from a “close” distance?

In images of other galaxies they look very bright and vivid against the blackness of space (example). If I was located a few tens of thousands of lightyears away from a galaxy, would I see something ...
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1answer
192 views

Has the great Andromeda Galaxy ever collided with any galaxies?

We know that the Andromeda Galaxy is moving towards the Milky Way and vice versa, so there will be a collision. Because of the vast space between them, the stars as they are defined will not ...
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2answers
141 views

Metal rich or metal poor?

What does the image in the link mean? Are the stars in the halo high in metallicity or low? How about at the bottom by the disk? ...
4
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1answer
66 views

Is metallicity low at the central region or nucleus of the Milky Way?

Is metallicity low at the central region or nucleus of the Milky Way? Does metallicity decrease or increase as we move from the center out to the edges of our galaxy?
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1answer
98 views

Question about total absolute magnitudes of galaxies - negative or not?

I have seen this in a couple of places, but when the authors in the paper - http://chandra.as.utexas.edu/~kormendy/kfcb-accepted.pdf - wrote: "All 10 of our ellipticals with total absolute ...
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1answer
37 views

Trouble understanding speed-dispersion in (elliptical) galaxies

I'm learning about LOSVDs (Line Of Sight Velocity Distributions) and I'm having a bit of trouble understanding the used terms. As I understand, the LOSVD of a given (elliptical) galaxy is the density ...
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24 views

Halpha velocity fields of spirals falling into a cluster

What kind of impact would you expect ram pressure stripping / tidal interactions / harassment / interactions with the cluster potential (etc!) to have on the h-alpha velocity fields of infalling ...
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3answers
1k views

What's in the center of a Galaxy?

Ok, so it's supposed that there is a black hole in the center of any galaxy, that makes my head explode because: There is light in the center of the galaxy, but it is supposed that black holes, also ...