Dance of the Radio Galaxies
Four radio galaxies perform a complicated dance in the heart of Abell 2255, a rich cluster of galaxies in the throes of a cluster-cluster merger. The optical image, collected at Kitt Peak National Observatory, is displayed in blue and reveals numerous galaxies in a chain-like structure. The NRAO Very Large Array was used to obtain the radio data, which are shown in red. The prominent radio galaxies include three sources in which twin jets of radio-emitting plasma are swept back into a single tail by motion relative to the diffuse gas which permeates the cluster itself. Also visible are numerous fainter galaxies with associated radio emission. In many cases, these are starbursts likely instigated by the dramatic environment.
The optical image was obtained at KPNO using the 0.9m with the Mosaic CCD. The original pixel scale was 0.68" with seeing of about 1". The radio image is the result of numerous pointings combined in a mosaic. It corresponds to both B and D array VLA data, each at 1.4GHz. Exposure times per pointing were about 20 minutes (B array) and 10 minutes (D array), resulting in a net rms noise in the final mosaic map of under 40 uJy/beam.
Legacy Astronomical Images
NRAO/AUI/NSF does not hold full copyright for this image. Contact the archivist for details.
Legacy Astronomical Image
Neal Miller, Frazer Owen
Very Large Array (VLA)
Type of Observation
Center of Image
RA 17:12:30.300, Dec: 64:1:49.800 (J2000)
Field of View
0.200000 x 0.150000 degrees
Contact the archivist for a high resolution tif of this image.
Legacy Astronomical Images, “Dance of the Radio Galaxies,” NRAO Archives, accessed December 3, 2021, https://www.nrao.edu/archives/items/show/33532.