Galaxy NGC 3310

NGC 3310 + SN 2021gmj
NGC 3310 + SN 2021gmj: Galaxy NGC 3310 with supernova SN2021gmj; 30" SlipStream-Dobson f/3.3; 20s bei ISO 25'600; Hasliberg; © 3. 4. 2021 Eduard von Bergen


The galaxy NGC 3310 was discovered by Wilhelm Herschel on April 12, 1789. It is a spiral galaxy of morphological type SA(rs)bc pec. In Halton Arp's 1966 «Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies», NGC 3310 is listed under the number Arp 217 as an example of a galaxy with an attached bow. The escape velocities measured since 2000 range from 952 km/s to 993 km/s and the distances determined from them range from 17 Mpc to 20 Mpc. [145, 196, 199]

On March 20, 2021, a type II supernova was discovered: SN2021gmj. It reached magnitude 15.1. See fig. 1. Previous known supernovae in this galaxy are: SN1991N, SN1974C. [303, 304]

Physical Properties

NGC 3310
NGC 3310: Section of the Sloan Digitized Sky Survey [147]

NGC 3310 is a well-studied starburst galaxy thought to have earlier merged with a companion. It shows various tidal formations surrounding the main disc and two large H-I tails extending north and south. [305] Observations with the Hubble Space Telescope showed a rotating disk of gas at its center, suggesting a supermassive black hole of about 5 to 42 million times the mass of the Sun. [306]

«Revised New General Catalogue and Index Catalogue» Dr. Wolfgang Steinicke, 2021 [277]
DesignationNGC 3310
TypeGx (SBbc/P)
Right Ascension10h 38m 45.6s
Declination+53° 30' 12"
Diameter3.10 × 2.4 arcmin
Photographic (blue) magnitude11.2 mag
Visual magnitude10.8 mag
Surface brightness12.8 mag·arcmin-2
Position angle156°
Distance derived from z14.0 Mpc
Metric Distance18.10 Mpc
Dreyer DescriptioncB, pL, R, vg, vsmbMN 15"
IdentificationUGC 5786, MCG 9-18-8, CGCG 267-4, IRAS 10356+5345, VV 356, VV 406, PRC D-15, Arp 217

Finder Chart

NGC 3310 is located in the constellation Ursa Maior, about 10 arc minutes south of the 5.5 mag bright star HR 4156, which on a dark night still is visible to the eye. It is circumpolar and is highest in the sky at night from December to June.

Chart NGC 3310
Chart created using SkySafari 6 Pro and STScI Digitized Sky Survey. [149, 160]

Visual Observation

762 mm aperture: Current supernova (SN2021gmj) in galaxy visually clear and well visible.

— 3. 4. 2021, Eduard von Bergen


145SIMBAD astronomical database;
147Aladin Lite; (2020-12-23)
149SkySafari 6 Pro, Simulation Curriculum;
160The STScI Digitized Sky Survey;
196Celestial Atlas by Curtney Seligman; (2020-12-28)
199Atlas Of Peculiar Galaxies, Halton Arp; (2020-12-28)
277«Historische Deep-Sky Kataloge» von Dr. Wolfgang Steinicke; (2021-02-17)
303List of Supernovae; (2021-04-08)
304All active supernova over mag 17.0; (2021-04-08)
305«Tidal Debris in the Starburst Galaxy NGC 3310: A New Tidal Loop?» Elizabeth H. Wehner and John S. Gallagher III 2004 ApJ 618 L21; DOI:10.1086/427651
306«Supermassive black holes in the Sbc spiral galaxies NGC 3310, NGC 4303 and NGC 4258» G. Pastorini, A. Marconi1 A. Capetti, D. J. Axon, A. Alonso-Herrero, J. Atkinson, D. Batcheldor, C. M. Carollo, J. Collett, L. Dressel, M. A. Hughes, D. Macchetto, W. Maciejewski, W. Sparks and R. van der Marel; A&A Volume 469, Number 2, July II 2007; DOI:10.1051/0004-6361:20066784