Astrophysics (Index)About

Magellanic clouds

(two nearby galaxies)

The Magellanic clouds (sometimes abbreviated MC) are two nearby galaxies, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) and the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC). They are among the closest to the Milky Way and two of its satellite galaxies, i.e., members of the Milky Way subgroup of the Local Group. The two have long been recognized and are of interest for being among the nearest and easiest galaxies to observe from without, and for offering examples of astronomical objects somewhat different than those in the Milky Way, such as more young globular clusters, and offering good views of some bright stars since dust within the Milky Way obscures our view of many of its stars. The two have long been classified as irregular galaxies, but more recently, refined classification has been developed regarding their morphology: they are considered to be a type of spiral galaxy, the term named after them: Magellanic spiral galaxies. They are also classified as dwarf galaxies.

(galaxies,Milky Way,Local Group)
Further reading:

Referenced by pages:
galaxy cloud
Magellanic Bridge
Magellanic Stream
Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC)
spiral galaxy