LEDA 074886: a remarkable rectangular-looking galaxy

Alister W. Graham*, Lee R. Spitler, Duncan A. Forbes, Thorsten Lisker, Ben Moore, Joachim Janz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


We report the discovery of an interesting and rare rectangular-shaped galaxy. At a distance of 21 Mpc, the dwarf galaxy LEDA 074886 has an absolute R-band magnitude of -17.3 mag. Adding to this galaxy's intrigue is the presence of an embedded, edge-on stellar disk (of extent 2 Re,disk = 12″ = 1.2 kpc) for which Forbes et al. reported vrot/σ ≈ 1.4. We speculate that this galaxy may be the remnant of two (nearly edge-on) merged disk galaxies in which the initial gas was driven inward and subsequently formed the inner disk, while the stars at larger radii effectively experienced a dissipationless merger event resulting in this "emerald cut galaxy" having very boxy isophotes with a 4/a = -0.05 to -0.08 from 3 to 5 kpc. This galaxy suggests that knowledge from simulations of both "wet" and "dry" galaxy mergers may need to be combined to properly understand the various paths that galaxy evolution can take, with a particular relevance to blue elliptical galaxies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number121
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 10 May 2012
Externally publishedYes


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