APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

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APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by APOD Robot » Sat Mar 07, 2015 5:08 am

Image NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula

Explanation: Near the outskirts of the Small Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy some 200 thousand light-years distant, lies 5 million year young star cluster NGC 602. Surrounded by natal gas and dust, NGC 602 is just below center in this telescopic field of view with the angular size of the Full Moon on the sky. The cluster itself is about 200 light-years in diameter. Glowing interior ridges and swept back shapes strongly suggest that energetic radiation and shock waves from NGC 602's massive young stars have eroded the dusty material and triggered a progression of star formation moving away from the cluster's center. Of course, the more extended wings of emission in the region suggest a popular name for the complex cosmic environment, The Flying Lizard Nebula.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by geckzilla » Sat Mar 07, 2015 10:35 am

Anyone having any luck seeing a flying lizard?
Just call me "geck" because "zilla" is like a last name.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Ann » Sat Mar 07, 2015 11:02 am

geckzilla wrote:Anyone having any luck seeing a flying lizard?
I think you need a more wide angle picture to see any sort of creature here. (Not that I know if I might have seen anything there anyway. I mean, where is, for example, the Aquaman in Aquarius?)

But it is interesting that NGC 602 is clearly one stage of a series of probably triggered star formation. The link to the picture of the Small Magellanic Cloud by Josch Hambsch and Robert Gendler shows NGC 602 and at least three other emission nebulas and clusters at about 8 o'clock. In the enlarged version, they are at about 5 o'clock. In today's APOD, the other nebulas and clusters close to NGC 602 are located off the edge of the picture to the right.

It's nice to see today's APOD. As a color freak, I like the pink and purplish-blue hues. Note the star some distance to the right of NGC 602 surrounded by a large, faint blue halo. This is clearly a massive star that has had some sort of an outburst.

And I vote for more Small Magellanic Cloud pictures! We don't get enough of them.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by geckzilla » Sat Mar 07, 2015 11:06 am

I thought so at first, too. Searching for wider angles yielded no results, however. Reading the photographer's description provided the final clue that the lizard is being viewed face on. I think I have it:
flying_lizard.jpg
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Just call me "geck" because "zilla" is like a last name.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Nitpicker » Sat Mar 07, 2015 11:12 am

Ann wrote: I mean, where is, for example, the Aquaman in Aquarius?)
That one I can answer (sort of). Here is the interpretation of the Water Bearer from Stellarium, at least:
aquarius_by_stellarium.PNG
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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by NCTom » Sat Mar 07, 2015 11:47 am

Possibly showing my ignorance here. There appears to be an open cluster above and to the left of NGC 602 in a position to have been born out of a region of a much expanded natal cloud. The left wing of the lizard has a shape that might indicate it was formed by the stellar winds coming from this much earlier star forming event. Of course line of sight alignment could throw this whole idea into another galaxy!

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by starsurfer » Sat Mar 07, 2015 3:25 pm

NCTom wrote:Possibly showing my ignorance here. There appears to be an open cluster above and to the left of NGC 602 in a position to have been born out of a region of a much expanded natal cloud. The left wing of the lizard has a shape that might indicate it was formed by the stellar winds coming from this much earlier star forming event. Of course line of sight alignment could throw this whole idea into another galaxy!
This is indeed an open cluster and it is catalogued as Lindsay 107.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by starsurfer » Sat Mar 07, 2015 3:32 pm

I'm surprised that the description makes no mention of the supernova remnant in this area, the faint blue semicircle to the right of NGC 602. It is catalogued as MCSNR J0127-7332 and surrounds the pulsar SXP 1062. I believe this is the only known supernova remnant in the SMC associated with a pulsar.

The large ring shaped nebula that NGC 602 appears to be part of is DEM S167. It can be seen near the left of this widefield image by Marco Lorenzi.

Also this is another timely APOD as Don Goldman is doing a presentation at the CEDIC conference today!

Finally, I think the nickname of the Flying Lizard Nebula only refers to NGC 602 and the band of emission running diagonally next to it.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by BMAONE23 » Sat Mar 07, 2015 5:25 pm

starsurfer wrote:
NCTom wrote:Possibly showing my ignorance here. There appears to be an open cluster above and to the left of NGC 602 in a position to have been born out of a region of a much expanded natal cloud. The left wing of the lizard has a shape that might indicate it was formed by the stellar winds coming from this much earlier star forming event. Of course line of sight alignment could throw this whole idea into another galaxy!
This is indeed an open cluster and it is catalogued as Lindsay 107.
Can't locate any images of Lindsay 107 that would clearly define extents other than it being a grouping of 6 loosely related stars but just left of that region is a particularly interesting asterism of 11 stare that make an almost perfect rectangle

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Boomer12k » Sat Mar 07, 2015 7:25 pm

Really awesome!!!


To see a nebula so far away too..

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by John Champagne » Sat Mar 07, 2015 7:27 pm

I wonder to what extent have the trajectories of satellite galaxies been mapped, so that the time since the most recent passage through the plane of the Milky Way can be compared to the age of the youngest stars in those galaxies.

If it were possible to make maps accurate enough (or if some satellites are close enough to the plane, having just exited), it might be possible to identify star-forming regions within the Milky Way whose activity was triggered by the shock waves caused by satellites 'punching' through the galaxy plane.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Chris Peterson » Sat Mar 07, 2015 8:10 pm

John Champagne wrote:I wonder to what extent have the trajectories of satellite galaxies been mapped, so that the time since the most recent passage through the plane of the Milky Way can be compared to the age of the youngest stars in those galaxies.

If it were possible to make maps accurate enough (or if some satellites are close enough to the plane, having just exited), it might be possible to identify star-forming regions within the Milky Way whose activity was triggered by the shock waves caused by satellites 'punching' through the galaxy plane.
I believe that the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy is the only Local Group companion that is likely to have passed through the body of the Milky Way one or more times. This may have profoundly affected the structure of our galaxy, but periods of regional star formation are short lived (tens of millions of years), and our galactic rotation scrambles up structure quickly enough that it's unlikely we could relate any current regions of star formation with past galactic collisions.
Chris

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Friendly Mo » Sun Mar 08, 2015 2:20 am

geckzilla wrote:I thought so at first, too. Searching for wider angles yielded no results, however. Reading the photographer's description provided the final clue that the lizard is being viewed face on. I think I have it:
flying_lizard.jpg
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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by stephen63 » Sun Mar 08, 2015 2:49 am

geckzilla wrote:Anyone having any luck seeing a flying lizard?
No, a chirping bird, as usual!

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Ann » Sun Mar 08, 2015 5:42 am

Chris Peterson wrote:
John Champagne wrote:I wonder to what extent have the trajectories of satellite galaxies been mapped, so that the time since the most recent passage through the plane of the Milky Way can be compared to the age of the youngest stars in those galaxies.

If it were possible to make maps accurate enough (or if some satellites are close enough to the plane, having just exited), it might be possible to identify star-forming regions within the Milky Way whose activity was triggered by the shock waves caused by satellites 'punching' through the galaxy plane.
I believe that the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy is the only Local Group companion that is likely to have passed through the body of the Milky Way one or more times. This may have profoundly affected the structure of our galaxy, but periods of regional star formation are short lived (tens of millions of years), and our galactic rotation scrambles up structure quickly enough that it's unlikely we could relate any current regions of star formation with past galactic collisions.
I'm sure Chris is right about the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy. No known star formation in the Milky Way can be traced to the passage of the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy passing through the body of our galaxy.

But there is indeed speculation that the globular cluster NGC 6397 passed through the disk of our galaxy some five million years ago and triggered the formation of the massive open cluster NGC 6231.
http://www.daviddarling.info/encycloped ... _6397.html wrote:
A study of the motion of NGC 6397 has shown that the cluster passed through the galactic disk less than 5 million years ago. The point where it passed through is very close to the position where the open cluster NGC 6231 (often considered the core of the Scorpius OB1 association) would have been at that time. Age determinations for NGC 6231 are consistent with its formation at the time of or soon after the NGC 6397 disk crossing. This suggests that the disk passage of NGC 6397 may have triggered the formation of NGC 6231.1 If so, this would be the first observational evidence for the disk passage of globular clusters as a dynamical trigger of star formation, a mechanism previously proposed by Wallin et al.2
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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by starsurfer » Sun Mar 08, 2015 3:00 pm

Both Ann and Chris Peterson have incredible information! You should team up together and write a book! :D

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Wfraumann » Mon Mar 09, 2015 2:57 pm

For a rank amateur, it would be interesting if they were able to take away all the extraneous stars that are not part of the Nebula itself so I could get a better idea of what stars are actually part of the nursery. Is that possible?

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by BDanielMayfield » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:19 pm

Wfraumann wrote:For a rank amateur, it would be interesting if they were able to take away all the extraneous stars that are not part of the Nebula itself so I could get a better idea of what stars are actually part of the nursery. Is that possible?
It's doable, but there still is much uncertainty about star's true distances. The Gaia Mission is now working to improve this greatly by acurately measuring the 3D positions and motions of about one million stars.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by Ann » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:20 pm

Wfraumann wrote:For a rank amateur, it would be interesting if they were able to take away all the extraneous stars that are not part of the Nebula itself so I could get a better idea of what stars are actually part of the nursery. Is that possible?
To me it looks like all the stars seen within the boundary of the bright nebula are genuine members of clusters born in it. All the stars "inside" the nebula are about the same color, and they are of moderately the same brightness. Check out this Hubble image of NGC 602. All the stars but one is blue, and the yellow star is just "outside" the nebula. This might be a foreground star, but to me it seems just as likely that it is a star born out of NGC 602 which has already evolved into a red giant. Also, since the position of NGC 602 is relatively "isolated" in the wing of SMC, we may assume that there are not all that many bright foreground of background SMC stars located along our line of sight to this bright nebula. Nevertheless, there are really some yellow and not remarkably bright stars just outside the nebula which may be unrelated to the nebula and not born inside it.

On a different note, it is interesting to consider how many foreground Milky Way stars we are seeing in this picture. Once Gaia has done its job, provided everything works out like it is supposed to, we will indeed be able to say with certainty which stars in this APOD really belong to the SMC and which are foreground Milky Way stars. But for now, we have no such certainty.

However, there are a few things we can say. Take a look at the bright yellow star at about 1 o'clock. Is that a foreground star? Yes, definitely. The bright yellow star is HD 9210, and it is of the 9th magnitude, while the brightest star in the SMC, HD 5980, is of the 11th magnitude when seen from the Earth. No star apparently located in the Small Magellanic Cloud can be of the 9th magnitude when seen from the Earth unless it is either a foreground star or a supernova (or at least some sort of bright nova). And no supernova or bright nova has been reported in the SMC since I started taking a serious interest in astronomy in the 1970s, so therefore the bright yellow star at about 1 o'clock in this picture is a foreground star.

But there are a few other rather bright orange stars in this picture, which might indeed be genuine red supergiants in the SMC.

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by BDanielMayfield » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:32 pm

Ann wrote:
Wfraumann wrote:For a rank amateur, it would be interesting if they were able to take away all the extraneous stars that are not part of the Nebula itself so I could get a better idea of what stars are actually part of the nursery. Is that possible?
To me it looks like all the stars seen within the boundary of the bright nebula are genuine members of clusters born in it. All the stars "inside" the nebula are about the same color, and they are of moderately the same brightness. Check out this Hubble image of NGC 602. All the stars but one is blue, and the yellow star is just "outside" the nebula. This might be a foreground star, but to me it seems just as likely that it is a star born out of NGC 602 which has already evolved into a red giant. Also, since the position of NGC 602 is relatively "isolated" in the wing of SMC, we may assume that there are not all that many bright foreground of background SMC stars located along our line of sight to this bright nebula. Nevertheless, there are really some yellow and not remarkably bright stars just outside the nebula which may be unrelated to the nebula and not born inside it.

On a different note, it is interesting to consider how many foreground Milky Way stars we are seeing in this picture. Once Gaia has done its job, provided everything works out like it is supposed to, we will indeed be able to say with certainty which stars in this APOD really belong to the SMC and which are foreground Milky Way stars. But for now, we have no such certainty.

However, there are a few things we can say. Take a look at the bright yellow star at about 1 o'clock. Is that a foreground star? Yes, definitely. The bright yellow star is HD 9210, and it is of the 9th magnitude, while the brightest star in the SMC, HD 5980, is of the 11th magnitude when seen from the Earth. No star apparently located in the Small Magellanic Cloud can be of the 9th magnitude when seen from the Earth unless it is either a foreground star or a supernova (or at least some sort of bright nova). And no supernova or bright nova has been reported in the SMC since I started taking a serious interest in astronomy in the 1970s, so therefore the bright yellow star at about 1 o'clock in this picture is a foreground star.

But there are a few other rather bright orange stars in this picture, which might indeed be genuine red supergiants in the SMC.

Ann
Wow, so you have two approaches to Wfraumann's querry: my lazy armchair answer is to wait for more data, whereas Ann just plows in and attacks the problem head on, star by star. Color me impressed Ann.

Bruce
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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by epitalon » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:34 pm

Nitpicker wrote:
Ann wrote: I mean, where is, for example, the Aquaman in Aquarius?)
That one I can answer (sort of). Here is the interpretation of the Water Bearer from Stellarium, at least:
I believe that Aquarius is also named "Water pitcher" or in french Verseau, meaning "Water pourer".
I could imagine a jar upside-down in that part of the sky. Here is a picture : (Better reply late than never !)

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by bobarino » Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:25 am

Anyone else notice the exploding star with a sphere around it.. lower right quadrant???

My 10 year old pointed it out to me. I would have missed it.
Told him he needs to be an astro-physicist. He said "dad whatever" then went back to his video game

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Re: APOD: NGC 602 in the Flying Lizard Nebula (2015 Mar 07)

Post by starsurfer » Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:30 pm

bobarino wrote:Anyone else notice the exploding star with a sphere around it.. lower right quadrant???

My 10 year old pointed it out to me. I would have missed it.
Told him he needs to be an astro-physicist. He said "dad whatever" then went back to his video game
See my previous post.

Also if your 10 year old is interested in astronomy, best thing to do is get some books from the library, hopefully the seed of his or her curiosity will blossom into a beautiful flower of knowledge in the future.