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G.H. Jacoby (WIYN), J.D.P. Kenney, T. Tal, H.H. Crowl (Yale), J.J. Feldmeier (NOAO/YSU)
M86 (NGC 4406) is a giant elliptical galaxy that is believed to be falling into the Virgo cluster from behind. From decades of study in the X-ray, radio, optical, and the infrared, it has been thought that M86 is suffering ram pressure stripping of its interstellar medium, and/or combined with shocks. However, the overall picture of this interaction is still very unclear. Here, we provide additional pieces to the puzzle of M86's environment. We report the detection of large-scale ionized gas filaments, seen in H-alpha imaging, out to a total linear extent of 160 kpc away from M86. These filaments are distributed roughly East-West from the galaxy's nucleus, and lie within the X-ray plumes previously observed from this galaxy. There may also be some association between the H-alpha filaments with the H I tidal tail from the nearby galaxy NGC~4388 (Oosterloo & van Gorkom 2005). We supplement this imaging data with integral field spectroscopic observations of several filaments. We find a velocity gradient along the eastern filaments, from -150 km/s at 10' to the east to -50 km/s at 15' east. Near the center of M86, the kinematics here are complex, ranging from -100 to -500 km/s.
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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #4
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.