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Barred Spiral Galaxy NGC 613

NGC 613 is a beautiful barred spiral galaxy in the southern constellation Sculptor. This galaxy is inclined by 32 degrees and, contrary to most barred spirals, has many arms that give it a tentacular appearance.

Prominent dust lanes are visible along the large-scale bar. Extensive star-formation occurs in this area, at the ends of the bar, and also in the nuclear regions of the galaxy. The gas at the centre, as well as the radio properties are indicative of the presence of a massive black hole in the centre of NGC 613.

This image was obtained by the ESO Very Large Telescope with the FORS1 and FORS2 multi-mode instruments (at VLT MELIPAL and YEPUN, respectively) on December 16-18, 2001. North is up and East is left.