Chandra observations of The Mice

Andrew Read

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Citations (Scopus)


Presented here are high spatial and spectral resolution Chandra X-ray observations of the famous interacting galaxy pair, the Mice, a system similar to, though less evolved than, the well-known Antennae galaxies. Previously unpublished ROSAT High Resolution Imager data of the system are also presented. Starburst-driven galactic winds outflowing along the minor axis of both galaxies (but particularly the northern one) are observed, and spectral and spatial properties, and energetics are presented. That such a phenomenon can occur in such a rapidly evolving and turbulent system is surprising, and this is the first time that the very beginning - the onset, of starburst-driven hot gaseous outflow in a full-blown disc-disc merger has been seen. Point-source emission is seen at the galaxy nuclei, and within the interaction-induced tidal tails. Further point-source emission is associated with the galactic bar in the southern system. A comparison of the source X-ray luminosity function and of the diffuse emission properties is made with the Antennae and other galaxies, and evidence of a more rapid evolution of the source population than the diffuse component is found. No evidence for variability is found between the Chandra and previous observations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)715-724
Number of pages10
JournalRoyal Astronomical Society. Monthly Notices
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2003


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