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NGC 5591 is a double galaxy in Bootes about 540 million light years
away. The galaxies appear to be making their first encounter. Whether
their velocities are such they will merge I've not found. Come back in
a 100 million years and we should have a good answer to this. The
western component is listed at NED as Sdm pec with a starburst nucleus.
In this case the starburst activity appears related to their
interaction. The eastern component is classed as simply SC. The NGC
project takes the approach that this is one strongly disrupted galaxy
classed as Sc pec. To me it is quite obvious these are two galaxies
rather than one disrupted one. I doubt they looked anything like what
we see today before the encounter began.
The other major galaxy in the image is the ordinary NGC 5587 at the top
of the image. It is classed as S0/a by both NED and the NGC project.
With the faint but obvious dust lanes I have trouble with the S0
classification. It seems a rather old spiral in which star formation is
dying down though the outer parts still show blue stars. It is much
closer than NGC 5591 and not at all related to it. Redshift puts it at
about 110 million light-years.
The field has little else of interest. The field galaxies are mostly
all more than 1 billion light-years distant with some much more distant.
The few quasars are also unusually distant.
14" LX200R @ f/10, L=4x10, RGB=2x10, STL-11000XM, Paramount ME
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