Globular Cluster

Caldwell 25 – Intergalactic Wanderer

What is the origin of the name ‘Intergalactic Wanderer’ for the globular cluster NGC 2419, also known as Caldwell 25?

Position of NGC 2419

NGC 2419 is located in the northern sky within the constellation Lynx, and it is situated far outside the disk of the Milky Way galaxy, towards its outer halo.

Origin of the name

The name “Intergalactic Wanderer” for the globular cluster NGC 2419 originates from its unusual position and motion relative to the Milky Way. This globular cluster is situated at an extreme distance from the Milky Way, approximately 300,000 light-years away. By comparison, the average distance of other globular clusters from the Milky Way is around 100,000 light-years.

The extraordinary distance of NGC 2419 from the Milky Way and its high velocity through intergalactic space have led to its moniker as the “Intergalactic Wanderer.” It is believed that NGC 2419 may not have been originally part of the Milky Way but instead could have been captured from another galaxy.

Some unique facts

NGC 2419 is a unique globular cluster due to its high mass and density, possible extragalactic origin, and potential presence of dark matter, making it an important object for studying the nature of this mysterious substance.

Despite being one of the faintest globular clusters in the Milky Way, NGC 2419 is visible to the naked eye under dark sky conditions and has been known since ancient times.

NGC 2419 is also interesting because of its advanced age, estimated to be around 12.2 billion years, making it one of the oldest known globular clusters in the Milky Way.

Brightness of NGC 2419

NGC 2419 has an apparent magnitude of around 10.4, which makes it relatively faint, but it has a high absolute magnitude of about -9.4 due to its large distance from Earth.