A pre-merger in the Luminous Infrared System IRAS 02290+2533

Fidel Cruz, Héctor Aceves


We report optical and near-infrared imaging and photometry for the IRAS 02290+2533 source. Observations show that this source is a system of three galaxies. Two galaxies (A and B), which are separated in projection ≈ 10 kpc, show some evidence of tidal interaction between them. The spiral-like Galaxy B presents a disk-wide H emission and a high infrared luminosity, from near to mid-infrared wavelengths. We suggest that such luminosity is due to a probable disk-wide star-burst triggered by the ongoing gravitational interaction with Galaxy A. Galaxy B can be classied as a Luminous Infrared Galaxy (LIRG). We estimate that a binary merger in the system is likely to occur in < 1 Gyr. It is probable that this IRAS source will harbor in the future an Ultra LIRG, according to the evolutionary scheme of Sanders & Mirabel (1996).


galaxies: interactions; galaxies: photometry; infrared: galaxies; infrared: general

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