Mayall II = G1 is one of the most luminous globular clusters (GCs) known in M31. New deep, high-resolution observations with the Advanced Camera for Surveys on the Hubble Space Telescope are used to provide accurate photometric data to the smallest radii yet. In particular, we present the precise variation of ellipticity and position angle, and of surface brightness for the core of the object. Based on these accurate photometric data, we redetermine the structural parameters of Gl by fitting a single-mass isotropic King model. We derive a core radius, rc = 0.21 ± 0.01 arcsec (= 0.78 ± 0.04 pc), a tidal radius, rt = 21.8 ± 1.1 arcsec (= 80.7 ± 3.9 pc), and a concentration index c = log (rt/rc;) = 2.01 ± 0.02. The central surface brightness is 13.510 mag arcsec -2. We also calculate the half-light radius, at rh = 1.73 ± 0.07 arcsec (= 6.5 ± 0.3 pc). The results show that, within 10 core radii, a King model fits the surface brightness distribution well. We find that this object falls in the same region of the MV versus log Rh diagram as ω Centauri, M54 and NGC 2419 in the Milky Way. All three of these objects have been claimed to be the stripped cores of now defunct dwarf galaxies. We discuss in detail whether GCs, stripped cores of dwarf spheroidals and normal dwarf galaxies form a continuous distribution in the MV versus log Rh plane, or if GCs and dwarf spheroidals constitute distinct classes of objects; we present arguments in favour of this latter view.
- globular clusters: individual: Mayall II = G1
- G1 – galaxies: evolution
- galaxies: individual: M31