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NGC7600 © Ken Crawford      Rancho Del Sol Observatory  MPC G67
Image Exposure Details
Filter Exposures
Clear/ Lum 680 minutes
Red 160 minutes
Green 160 minutes
Blue 140 minutes
Ha   0 minutes
OIII   0 minutes
SII   0 minutes

NGC7600 is an elliptical galaxy and is around 50 Mpc in distance. This image shows an interleaved system of shells that are described in this Astronomical Journal Letters here. These types of structures around elliptical galaxies were first revealed by Malin & Carter in 1980. This deep image shows faint features not previously seen in color.

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In collaboration with Dr. David Martinez-Delgado and the star stream survey

This image has been inverted and contrast enhanced to help display the faint shell features and debris fragments. The farthest fragment is 140 kpc in projection from the center of the galaxy.

See the image on NASA APOD

These images may be used for personal or educational use but these images and this website are Copyright © Ken Crawford. If you are a publisher and would like a full resolution of this or other images please contact Ken Crawford.


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This simulation is a full cosmological N-body model based on the "cold dark matter theory".  It shows how the continuous accretion of clumps of dark matter and stars creates diffuse structures in the haloes of massive elliptical galaxies.  These bare a striking resemblance to the shells observed around the nearby elliptical galaxy NGC 7600.  The movie shows close encounters of dark matter haloes that coalesce and oscillate radially about the center of the main galaxy.  Along with the debris of smaller dwarf galaxies the mergers establish a main halo were shells propagate outwards. The tidal forces disrupt many of the smaller galaxies leaving behind streams of debris (star streams). Simulation Credits: Andrew Cooper, Carlos Frenk, John Helly, and Shaun Cole.  Image of NGC7600 by Ken Crawford in collaboration with David Martinez-Delgado.  NGC7600 is inserted into the movie to show the similarity of the model to the observed structures.  This movie has been shortened.
The formation of shell ellipticals similar to NGC 7600 in the cold dark matter cosmogony
Andrew P. Cooper, David MartÍnez-Delgado, John Helly, Carlos Frenk, Shaun Cole, Ken Crawford, Stefano Zibetti,
Julio A. Carballo-Bello, R. Jay Gabany

This is the full length simulation with NGC7600 inserted at the end. This link will provide you with the N-body simulations of how shell galaxies form with cold dark matter in several resolutions.

Movie Credits: J. Helly, A. Cooper, S. Cole and C. Frenk (ICC), based on simulation data from The Virgo consortium and software by V. Springel.

In collaboration with David Martinez-Delgado and the Star Stream Pilot Survey.

You can play or embed the full length movie here.

Full length movie on YouTube

Read the article in The Universe Today