NGC 5236 - SAB(s)c

NGC 5236

De Vaucouleurs Atlas Type: SAB(s)c

Filter: B

Telescope: Danish 1.54-m
North up , East left
Field Dimensions: 12.6 x 12.3 arcminutes

RC3 Type: SAB(s)c
RSA Type: SBc(s)II
Surface Brightness Range Displayed: 15.0-26.0 mag per square arcsec
Absolute Blue Magnitude: -20.4
Elmegreen Spiral Arm Class: AC 9

De Vaucouleurs Atlas Description:

NGC 5236 is a face-on prototype of the SAB(s)c classification. Indeed, it was galaxies like M83 that inspired de Vaucouleurs to develop the SAB family . The bar is weak in blue light but its leading dust lanes are very conspicuous. A well-defined two-armed spiral pattern emerges gradually from this bar in perhaps one of the most perfect s-shapes. Thus, M83 is an excellent example of the (s)-variety. A third arm breaks from the inner regions, and the structure in the outer disk is remarkably complex. As is typical of galaxies like this, dust is widespread and is concentrated in a wide variety of structures. Considerable branching of dust lanes off the main bar dust lanes is seen, very much as in other galaxies.

The center of M83 is interesting in that it harbors a strong starburst that in the B-band image appears as a small group of star-forming regions. In addition, a clear bar-like feature crosses the center. This feature is seen in the Atlas image, but was first noted by Elmegreen, Chromey, and Warren (1998) in the near-infrared. The central bar is oriented perpendicular to the primary bar .

M83 is a very well-observed, nearby object and has been the subject of dozens of research papers. Based on kinematic studies, it is believed to have a warped outer disk. The morphology of the galaxy at 2.2 microns is also very interesting. In this band, the bar is more conspicuous and the galaxy actually resembles a double-ringed SB galaxy (Jarrett et al. 2003). The appearance is similar to a galaxy of type (R')SB(rs)b, where the (rs) would be an open version of the wrapped arm type of inner ring seen in NGC 1433 .