VLT Observations of NGC 1316 in the Fornax Cluster

VLT Observations of NGC 1316 in the Fornax Cluster
From The European Southern Observatory
This color composite image is of the central area of NGC 1316, a giant elliptical galaxy in the Fornax cluster of galaxies. Many dark dust clouds and lanes are visible. Some of the star-like objects in the field are globular clusters of stars that belong to the galaxy. It is based on CCD exposures, obtained with the 8.2-m VLT/ANTU telescope and the FORS-1 multi-mode instrument through B (blue), V (green-yellow) and I (red). The "pyramids" above and below the bright center of the galaxy and the vertical lines at some of the brighter stars are caused by overexposure ("CCD bleeding"). The field measures 6.8 arcmin x 6.8 arcmin, with 0.2 arcsec/pixel. The image quality of this composite is about 0.9 arcsec. North is up and East is left.
In 1980 and 1981, NGC 1316 was the host of two supernovae of type Ia, a class of object that is widely used as a "cosmological standard candle" to determine the distance to very distant galaxies. A precise measurement of the distance to NGC 1316 may therefore provide an independent calibration of the intrinsic brightness of these supernovae. The new observations were performed during 8 nights distributed over the period from January 9 to 19, 2000. They were made in service mode at the 8.2-m VLT/ANTU telescope with the FORS-1 multi-mode instrument, using a 2k x 2k CCD camera with 0.2 arcsec pixels and a field of 6.8 arcmin x 6.8 arcmin. The exposures lasted 20 min and were carried out with three optical filters (B, V and I).
Based on press release with ESO PR Photo 18a/00
Catalog #: Photo 18a/00
Target Name: VLT observations of NGC 1316 in the Fornax Cluster

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 Last Modified On: Sunday, December 17, 2000