Journal Article

Searching for non-axisymmetries in NGC 6503: a weak end-on bar

Rachel Kuzio de Naray, Cameron A. Arsenault, Kristine Spekkens, J. A. Sellwood, Michael McDonald, Joshua D. Simon and Peter Teuben

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 427, issue 3, pages 2523-2536
Published in print December 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online December 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Searching for non-axisymmetries in NGC 6503: a weak end-on bar

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The isolation, simple apparent structure and low luminosity of the nearby spiral galaxy NGC 6503 make it an ideal candidate for an in-depth kinematic and photometric study. We introduce a new publicly available code, DiskFit, that implements procedures for fitting non-axisymmetries in either kinematic or photometric data. We use DiskFit to analyse new Hα and CO velocity field data as well as H i kinematics from Greisen et al. to search for non-circular motions in the disc of NGC 6503. We find NGC 6503 to have remarkably regular gas kinematics that are well described by rotation only. We also use DiskFit and a new Ks-band image of NGC 6503 to constrain photometric models of the disc, bar and bulge. We find the galaxy to be photometrically dominated by the disc. We find NGC 6503 to contain a faint bar and an exponential bulge which together contribute only ∼5 per cent of the total galaxy light. The combination of our kinematic and photometric DiskFit models suggests that NGC 6503 contains a weak, end-on bar that may have produced its Type II surface brightness profile but is unlikely to be responsible for its strong σ-drop.

Keywords: galaxies: kinematics and dynamics; galaxies: structure

Journal Article.  10131 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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