NGC 708

Alt. Designations: NGC 708
Object Type: elliptic galaxy
Constellation: Andromeda
Distance: 260 mly
Right Ascension: 01h 52m 46.4s
Declination: +36° 09´ 08"
Visual Magnitude: 11.9
Apparent Dimension: 3.0´ X 2.5´
Best Month To View: Oct

The Fath is a small cluster of galaxies, near the center of the larger cluster Abell 262. Located in the Andromeda constellation, it is at a distance of about 260 million light-years and includes NGC 703-710. The elliptical galaxy, NGC 708, dominates the cluster. Using the red shift data  one can calculate a rough distance estimate for The Fath of about 260 million light years.

NGC 708 is classified as a 'cluster dominant' Elliptical Galaxy, (M-87 type). These galaxies are several times larger and more massive than any other galaxy. One, or sometimes a pair, of these giants often occupies the very center of a galaxy cluster. Like many others of its type, NGC 708 has a central dust ring and a Seyfert Type II Active Galactic Nucleus (AGN). Astronomers believe that AGNs result from a super massive black hole at the center of a galaxy devouring stars, gas, and dust. One theory suggests that "cluster dominant" ellipticals are the result of the merging of a number of galaxies. Any galaxy now unlucky enough to wander into the central regions of the galaxy cluster will be "cannibalized" by this giant elliptical at the center.