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Astr111 Photography Projects, Fall 2009

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Bearpaw Galaxy , Alice Keyes

Bearpaw Nebula

The Bear Paw Galaxy is rather small and bright. It is officially listed as an irregular Dwarf galaxy. More common galaxies are elliptical or spiral and are put together in an organized manner. Our own galaxy is a spiral galaxy. Dwarf galaxies are made of only a few billion stars. In this case, the Bear Paw galaxy is relatively young. This is indicated by its blueish color indicating that the stars are still burning brightly. In reference to other objects, the Bear Paw can be found in the Lynx constellation near the Great Bear constellation. That is how the this galaxy received its name. Its overall structure also lends itself to looking like a bear's paw.

The galaxy is known as an irregular galaxy because it has little symmetry in its structure. There are three pronged looking parts of it that form the claws and a round part that looks like the pad of the paw. Only three percent of galaxies are classified as irregular galaxies. Most of them were once spiral or eliptical galaxies but were deformed by gravitational forces. The Bear Claw Galaxy is about 5.9 Mpc away from Earth and around .013 Mpc in diameter.

References:
Megan Smith, "Irregular Galaxies." Astronomy 111, Spring 2007.

Jamie Dillon, "NCG 2547, Bear Paw galaxy."

Right Ascension (J2000) 08:13:15
Declination (J2000) +45:59:29
Filters used blue(B), green(V), red(R), and clear(C)
Exposure time per filter 5x60 seconds in C, 300 seconds in BVR
Date observed

November 8, 2009 (C)
November 8, 2009 (BVR)