A dark galaxy in the virgo cluster imaged at 21-cm

R. F. Minchin, M. J. Disney, J. I. Davies, A. R. Marble, Christopher D Impey, P. J. Boyce, D. A. Garcia, M. Grossi, C. A. Jordan, R. H. Lang, S. Roberts, S. Sabatini, W. Van Driel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Dark Matter supposedly dominates the extragalactic Universe (Peebles 1993; Peacock 1998; Moore et al. 1999; D’Onghi & Lake 2004), yet no dark structure of galactic proportions has ever been convincingly identified. Earlier (Minchin et al. 2005) we suggested that VIRGOHI 21, a 21-cm source we found in the Virgo Cluster at Jodrell Bank using single-dish observations (Davies et al. 2004), was probably such a dark galaxy because of its broad line-width (∼200 km s−1) unaccompanied by any visible gravitational source to account for it. We have now imaged VIRGOHI 21 in the neutral-hydrogen line, and have found what appears to be a dark, edge-on, spinning disc with the mass and diameter of a typical spiral galaxy. Moreover the disc has unquestionably interacted with NGC 4254, a luminous spiral with an odd one-armed morphology, but lacking the massive interactor normally linked with such a feature. Published numerical models (Vollmer et al. 2005) of NGC 4254 call for a close interaction ∼108 years ago with a perturber of ∼1011 solar masses. This we take as further, independent evidence for the massive nature of VIRGOHI 21.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)101-106
Number of pages6
JournalAstrophysics and Space Science Proceedings
Issue number202409
DOIs
StatePublished - 2007

Keywords

  • Dark matter
  • Galaxies: Intergalactic medium
  • Galaxies: Peculiar

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Spectroscopy
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics

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  • Cite this

    Minchin, R. F., Disney, M. J., Davies, J. I., Marble, A. R., Impey, C. D., Boyce, P. J., Garcia, D. A., Grossi, M., Jordan, C. A., Lang, R. H., Roberts, S., Sabatini, S., & Van Driel, W. (2007). A dark galaxy in the virgo cluster imaged at 21-cm. Astrophysics and Space Science Proceedings, (202409), 101-106. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-5573-7_15