Companion of M51
|Right Ascension||13 : 30.0 (h:m)
|Declination||+47 : 16 (deg:m)
|Visual Brightness||9.6 (mag)
|Apparent Dimension||6.4x4.6 (arc min)|
Discovered by Pierre Mechain in 1781.
NGC 5195, the companion of M51, was discovered by Pierre Mechain on March 20, 1781. It was assigned an own number by William Herschel when he cataloged it on May 12, 1787: H I.186.
This galaxy has undergone a close encounter with the larger and more massive M51 several million years ago. During this encounter, it has been significantly distorted from an original disk to irregular shape; the encounter has also significantly enhanced the spiral structure of larger M51. It is thought that NGC 5195 has passed M51 roughly along our line of sight and is now behind its large neighbor.
NGC 5195 is the smaller, distorted galaxy in the lower part of our image. This image has been cropped from a larger Isaac Newton Telescope image of both interacting galaxies M51 and NGC 5195. NGC 5195 can be seen in many images of M51.
One supernova has been discovered in NGC 5195 so far: Supernova 1945A was found by Humason in this galaxy on April 8, 1945, 6'W and 4'S of the galaxy's nucleus, and reached mag 14.0.
Last Modification: 29 Mar 1998, 12:35 MET