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Messier 89 (M89 for short, also known as NGC 4552) is an elliptical galaxy in the constellation Virgo. It was discovered by Charles Messier on March 18 1781. M89 is a member of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies.[1]

Unusual features

Current observations indicate that M89 may be nearly perfectly spherical in shape. This would be unusual as all other known elliptic galaxies are relatively elongated ellipsoids.Template:Fact However, it is possible that the galaxy is oriented in such a way that it appears spherical to an observer on Earth but is in fact elliptical.

The galaxy also features a surrounding structure of gas and dust extending up to 150,000 light-years from the galaxy and jets of heated particles that extend 100,000 light-years outwards, indications that it may have once been an active quasar or radio galaxy.[2]

M89 also has a large population of globular clusters as compared to the Milky Way's 150-200, a 2006 survey out to 10′ of its core estimates that there are 2,000 ± 700 globulars within 25′ of M89.[3]

External links




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