Morphology of galactic globular clusters

C. W. Chen, W. P. Chen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


We study shapes and sizes of 110 Galactic globular clusters (GCs) with the 2MASS Point Source Catalog. In general, Galactic GCs have spherical halos, with a median flattening of 0.1. GCs closer to the bulge show more circularized shapes and have smaller physical sizes. Intrinsically more luminous clusters, hence perhaps more massive, tend to be more circularized. Six GCs are highly flattened with flattening ≥ 0.3 Arp 2 and Pal 12 are known to be associated with the streamer of the Sagittarius dwarf galaxy. Pal 5 is being cannibalized by the Milky Way, UKS 1 and NGC 6355 are bulge globular clusters suffering strong tidal distortion. NGC 2419 is a halo member with a Galactocentric distance 90 kpc. Its flattened shape can not be accounted for. It may well be the remnant core of an already dissolved dwarf galaxy.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAstrophysics and Space Science Proceedings
EditorsR.S. De Jong
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media B.V.
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781402055737
ISBN (Print)9780387727677, 9780387876207, 9781402055720, 9781402055720, 9781402069321, 9781402088674, 9781402091896, 9781441981608, 9781441983688, 9783540758259, 9783642033230, 9783642103216, 9783642103513, 9783642113406, 9783642172502, 9789048133994, 9789048134984
StatePublished - 2007
EventInternational Conference on Island Universe: Structure and Evolution of Disk Galaxies, 2005 - Terschelling, Netherlands
Duration: 3 Jul 20055 Jul 2005

Publication series

NameAstrophysics and Space Science Proceedings
ISSN (Print)1570-6591
ISSN (Electronic)1570-6605


ConferenceInternational Conference on Island Universe: Structure and Evolution of Disk Galaxies, 2005


  • Globular clusters
  • Morphology
  • Tidal distortion


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