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Water-Vapor Maser Survey for Active Galactic Nuclei: A Megamaser in NGC 6926
We made a survey of water-vapor maser emission for 93 AGNs with theNobeyama 45-m and Mopra 22-m telescopes from 1999 to 2002. A megamaserwas detected in a Seyfert 2 galaxy, NGC 6926, at a distance of 80Mpc, in2002 June. [Greenhill et al. (2003a) have also reported a detection ofthe megamaser at the close date.] The peak flux density was 110mJy, andthe total isotropic luminosity was 340 Lȯ. The masershows triply peaked spectrum, suggesting an edge-on disk. A narrow-linefeature of the maser components at VLSR = 6001 kms-1 was strongly variable with a time scale of a few tens ofdays, and the variation should be of intrinsic origin. We also showed apossibility of variability of water-vapor maser emission of a megamaserpreviously detected in a Seyfert/ultraluminous FIR galaxy, NGC 6240.

Rotational Widths for Use in the Tully-Fisher Relation. I. Long-Slit Spectroscopic Data
We present new long-slit Hα spectroscopy for 403 noninteractingspiral galaxies, obtained at the Palomar Observatory 5 m Hale telescope,which is used to derive well-sampled optical rotation curves. Becausemany of the galaxies show optical emission features that aresignificantly extended along the spectrograph slit, a technique wasdevised to separate and subtract the night sky lines from the galaxyemission. We exploit a functional fit to the rotation curve to identifyits center of symmetry; this method minimizes the asymmetry in thefinal, folded rotation curve. We derive rotational widths using bothvelocity histograms and the Polyex model fit. The final rotational widthis measured at a radius containing 83% of the total light as derivedfrom I-band images. In addition to presenting the new data, we use alarge sample of 742 galaxies for which both optical long-slit and radioH I line spectroscopy are available to investigate the relation betweenthe H I content of the disks and the extent of their rotation curves.Our results show that the correlation between those quantities, which iswell established in the case of H I-poor galaxies in clusters, ispresent also in H I-normal objects: for a given optical size, starformation can be traced farther out in the disks of galaxies with largerH I mass.

Kinematics of the local universe . XII. 21-cm line measurements of 586 galaxies with the new Nançay receiver
This paper presents 586 new 21-cm neutral hydrogen line measurementscarried out with the FORT receiver of the meridian transit Nançayradiotelescope in the period July 2000-March 2003. This observationalprogramme is part of a larger project aiming at collecting an exhaustiveand magnitude-complete HI extragalactic catalogue for Tully-Fisherapplications. It is associated with the building of the MIGALEspectroscopic archive and database.Tables 2, 3 and HI-profiles and corresponding comments are onlyavailable in electronic form at the CDS via anonymous ftp tocdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/430/373, or directly atour web site http://klun.obs-nancay.fr

The observations and studies of OH megamasers associated with external galaxies
During the thirty years since the first discovery of OH megamaserassociated with external galaxies, a great progress of observations andstudies for OH megamasers associated with external galaxies has beenproceeded. So far 106 OH megamasers associated with external galaxieshave been found, including 59 higher red-shifted ones. The observationsand studies of the OH megamasers associated with AGN and starburstgalaxies are the very efficient tools to investigate characteristics oftheir central sources and circumnuclear discs. A review on the currentprogress concerning surveys, observations and theoretical investigationson extragalactic OH megamaser sources is given in this paper.

Determination of the Thickness of Non-Edge-on Disk Galaxies
We propose a method to determine the thickness of non-edge-on diskgalaxies from their observed structure of spiral arms, based on thesolution of the truly three-dimensional Poisson's equation for alogarithmic disturbance of density and under the condition where theself-consistency of the density wave theory is no longer valid. Fromtheir measured number of arms, pitch angle and location of the innermostpoint of the spiral arms, we derive and present the thicknesses of 34spiral galaxies.

A study of the infrared characteristics of host IRAS sources with OH megamasers
OH megamasers are the most luminous cosmic maser sources known. So farpowerful OH maser emission has been discovered from 90 extragalacticobjects. An important observational characteristic of the OH megamasersources is their relationship between L(OH) and L(IR). We study therelationship between logL(OH) and logL(IR) for the 67 OH megamasersources for which there are data on L(OH) and L(IR). Accounting forMalmquist bias, the relationship L(OH) ~L(IR)1.41 isobtained. We use the largest sample currently available to study therelationship between L(OH) and L(IR) for OH megamaser sources. Ourresults agree with Kandalian's results within the uncertainties.The infrared properties of the host IRAS sources with OH megamasers arealso studied. The most striking features are the anticorrelation of S(12μm)/S(25 μm) versus S(60 μm)/S(100 μm) and the correlationof S(12 μm)/S(25 μm) versus S(25 μm)/S(60 μm). They areconsistent with Henkel, Wouterlooy & Bally's finding that S(12μm)/S(25 μm) is anticorrelated with S(60 μm)/S(100 μm), butare the opposite of Henkel et al.'s result that S(12 μm)/S(25 μm)is correlated with S(25 μm)/S(60 μm). This is an interestingdifference. Our colour-colour plots suggest that the peak of theinfrared spectra of our sample of OH sources is at a longer wavelengththan the peak in the sample of Henkel et al. This suggests that infraredradiation from our sample is dominated by emission from material atgreater separations from the central source.

Vertical Scale Parameter Estimates for 48 Non-edge-on Spiral Galaxies
In the first paper of this series, we directly studied the mathematicalforms, symmetry of spiral structure, and the projection of galacticdiscs on the images, and measured the pitch angles of the spiral armsand inclination angles of the galactic discs for 60 spiral galaxies. Inthis second paper, we estimate the vertical scale parameters of 48non-edge-on spiral galaxies based on the method proposed by Peng et al.and on the results given in Paper I. As we know, for edge-on discgalaxies we can obtain the vertical scale parameter from the photometry,once a mathematical form is specified for the vertical lightdistribution. For non-edge-on galaxies, some other methods have to beused. The statistical result was that the vertical scale parameter iscomparable for edge-on and non-edge-on galaxies, although it is obtainedfrom two very different methods.

The IRAS Revised Bright Galaxy Sample
IRAS flux densities, redshifts, and infrared luminosities are reportedfor all sources identified in the IRAS Revised Bright Galaxy Sample(RBGS), a complete flux-limited survey of all extragalactic objects withtotal 60 μm flux density greater than 5.24 Jy, covering the entiresky surveyed by IRAS at Galactic latitudes |b|>5°. The RBGS includes629 objects, with median and mean sample redshifts of 0.0082 and 0.0126,respectively, and a maximum redshift of 0.0876. The RBGS supersedes theprevious two-part IRAS Bright Galaxy Samples(BGS1+BGS2), which were compiled before the final(Pass 3) calibration of the IRAS Level 1 Archive in 1990 May. The RBGSalso makes use of more accurate and consistent automated methods tomeasure the flux of objects with extended emission. The RBGS contains 39objects that were not present in the BGS1+BGS2,and 28 objects from the BGS1+BGS2 have beendropped from RBGS because their revised 60 μm flux densities are notgreater than 5.24 Jy. Comparison of revised flux measurements forsources in both surveys shows that most flux differences are in therange ~5%-25%, although some faint sources at 12 and 25 μm differ byas much as a factor of 2. Basic properties of the RBGS sources aresummarized, including estimated total infrared luminosities, as well asupdates to cross identifications with sources from optical galaxycatalogs established using the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database. Inaddition, an atlas of images from the Digitized Sky Survey with overlaysof the IRAS position uncertainty ellipse and annotated scale bars isprovided for ease in visualizing the optical morphology in context withthe angular and metric size of each object. The revised bolometricinfrared luminosity function, φ(Lir), forinfrared-bright galaxies in the local universe remains best fit by adouble power law, φ(L)~Lα, withα=-0.6(+/-0.1) and α=-2.2(+/-0.1) below and above the``characteristic'' infrared luminosityL*ir~1010.5Lsolar,respectively. A companion paper provides IRAS High Resolution (HIRES)processing of over 100 RBGS sources where improved spatial resolutionoften provides better IRAS source positions or allows for deconvolutionof close galaxy pairs.

A new catalogue of ISM content of normal galaxies
We have compiled a catalogue of the gas content for a sample of 1916galaxies, considered to be a fair representation of ``normality''. Thedefinition of a ``normal'' galaxy adopted in this work implies that wehave purposely excluded from the catalogue galaxies having distortedmorphology (such as interaction bridges, tails or lopsidedness) and/orany signature of peculiar kinematics (such as polar rings,counterrotating disks or other decoupled components). In contrast, wehave included systems hosting active galactic nuclei (AGN) in thecatalogue. This catalogue revises previous compendia on the ISM contentof galaxies published by \citet{bregman} and \citet{casoli}, andcompiles data available in the literature from several small samples ofgalaxies. Masses for warm dust, atomic and molecular gas, as well asX-ray luminosities have been converted to a uniform distance scale takenfrom the Catalogue of Principal Galaxies (PGC). We have used twodifferent normalization factors to explore the variation of the gascontent along the Hubble sequence: the blue luminosity (LB)and the square of linear diameter (D225). Ourcatalogue significantly improves the statistics of previous referencecatalogues and can be used in future studies to define a template ISMcontent for ``normal'' galaxies along the Hubble sequence. The cataloguecan be accessed on-line and is also available at the Centre desDonnées Stellaires (CDS).The catalogue is available in electronic form athttp://dipastro.pd.astro.it/galletta/ismcat and at the CDS via anonymousftp to\ cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or via\http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/405/5

Bar Galaxies and Their Environments
The prints of the Palomar Sky Survey, luminosity classifications, andradial velocities were used to assign all northern Shapley-Ames galaxiesto either (1) field, (2) group, or (3) cluster environments. Thisinformation for 930 galaxies shows no evidence for a dependence of barfrequency on galaxy environment. This suggests that the formation of abar in a disk galaxy is mainly determined by the properties of theparent galaxy, rather than by the characteristics of its environment.

Local velocity field from sosie galaxies. I. The Peebles' model
Pratton et al. (1997) showed that the velocity field around clusterscould generate an apparent distortion that appears as tangentialstructures or radial filaments. In the present paper we determine theparameters of the Peebles' model (1976) describing infall of galaxiesonto clusters with the aim of testing quantitatively the amplitude ofthis distortion. The distances are determined from the concept of sosiegalaxies (Paturel 1984) using 21 calibrators for which the distanceswere recently calculated from two independent Cepheid calibrations. Weuse both B and I-band magnitudes. The Spaenhauer diagram method is usedto correct for the Malmquist bias. We give the equations for theconstruction of this diagram. We analyze the apparent Hubble constant indifferent regions around Virgo and obtain simultaneously the Local Groupinfall and the unperturbed Hubble constant. We found:[VLG-infall = 208 ± 9 km s-1] [\log H =1.82 ± 0.04 (H ≈ 66 ± 6 km s-1Mpc-1).] The front side and backside infalls can be seenaround Virgo and Fornax. In the direction of Virgo the comparison ismade with the Peebles' model. We obtain: [vinfall} =CVirgo/r0.9 ± 0.2] withCVirgo=2800 for Virgo and CFornax=1350 for Fornax,with the adopted units (km s-1 and Mpc). We obtain thefollowing mean distance moduli: [μVirgo=31.3 ± 0.2(r=18 Mpc )] [μFornax=31.7 ± 0.3 (r=22 Mpc). ] Allthese quantities form an accurate and coherent system. Full Table 2 isonly available in electronic form at the CDS via anonymous ftp tocdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/393/57

Analysis of the distribution of HII regions in external galaxies. IV. The new galaxy sample. Position and inclination angles
We have compiled a new sample of galaxies with published catalogs of HIIregion coordinates. This sample, together with the former catalog ofGarcía-Gómez & Athanassoula (\cite{gga1}), will formthe basis for subsequent studies of the spiral structure in discgalaxies. In this paper we address the problem of the deprojection ofthe galaxy images. For this purpose we use two deprojection methodsbased on the HII region distribution and compare the results with thevalues found in the literature using other deprojection methods. Takinginto account the results of all the methods, we propose optimum valuesfor the position and inclination angles of all the galaxies in oursample. Tables 2 and 3 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org

A Method of Obtaining the Pitch Angle of Spiral Arms and the Inclination of Galactic Discs
We investigate the mathematical form, the symmetry of spiral structureand the projected images of galactic discs. The measured pitch angles ofspiral arms and inclination angles of galactic discs for 60 spiralgalaxies are presented. The global spiral structure is emphasized in thestudy. It is found that, except for small-scale distortions, the spiralarms of those galaxies that were classified as AC 12 in the armclassification system of Elmegreen & Elmegreen, can be representedby the logarithmic spiral form.

Homogenization of the Stellar Population along Late-Type Spiral Galaxies
We present a study of the broadband UBV color profiles for 257 Sbcbarred and nonbarred galaxies, using photoelectric aperture photometrydata from the literature. Using robust statistical methods, we haveestimated the color gradients of the galaxies, as well as the total andbulge mean colors. A comparative photometric study using CCD images wasdone. In our sample, the color gradients are negative (reddish inward)in approximately 59% of the objects, are almost null in 27%, and arepositive in 14%, considering only the face-on galaxies, which representapproximately 51% of the sample. The results do not change, essentially,when we include the edge-on galaxies. As a consequence of this study wehave also found that barred galaxies are overrepresented among theobjects having null or positive gradients, indicating that bars act as amechanism of homogenization of the stellar population. This effect ismore evident in the U-B color index, although it can also be detected inthe B-V color. A correlation between the total and bulge colors wasfound that is a consequence of an underlying correlation between thecolors of bulges and disks found by other authors. Moreover, the meantotal color is the same irrespective of the gradient regime, whilebulges are bluer in galaxies with null or positive gradients, whichindicates an increase of the star formation rate in the central regionsof these objects. We have also made a quantitative evaluation of theamount of extinction in the center of these galaxies. This was doneusing the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) and the Near InfraredCamera and Multi-Object Spectrometer (NICMOS) Hubble Space Telescope(HST) archival data, as well as CCD B, V, and I images. We show thatalthough the extinction in the V-band can reach values up to 2 mag inthe central region, it is unlikely that dust plays a fundamental role inglobal color gradients. We found no correlation between color and O/Habundance gradients. This result could suggest that the color gradientsare more sensitive to the age rather than to the metallicity of thestellar population. However, the absence of this correlation may becaused by dust extinction. We discuss this result by considering apicture in which bars are a relatively fast, recurrent phenomenon. Theseresults are not compatible with a pure classical monolithic scenario forbulge and disk formation. On the contrary, they favor a scenario inwhich both these components are evolving in a correlated process inwhich stellar bars play a crucial role. Based partly on observationsmade at the Pico dos Dias Observatory (PDO/LNA-CNPq), Brazil.

Spiral arms in near-infrared bands. Broad- and narrow-band NIR photometry
We investigate the contribution of Brgamma and H_2 emission due to youngobjects in the arms of spiral galaxies observed in the K'filter. Out of a sample of disk galaxies for which we obtained deepsurface photometry in broad- and narrow-band near-infrared filters, weselected two grand design spirals (NGC 5861, NGC 7412), which clearlyhave sharp knots along their arms both in optical and NIR images. Forthese galaxies we estimate the amount of light coming from Brgamma andH2 emission and we conclude that it represents only a fewpercent of the observed K' light. For comparison we used thespiral galaxy NGC 4603, which has high recessional velocity. In thiscase the emission lines we study are practically shifted out of thenarrow-band filter. Comparing its flux with what we found in the twoformer cases, we conclude that a major contribution from young objectsin K'comes from continuum radiation which in the arm regionscan amount to 20%. Based on observations collected at the EuropeanSouthern Observatory, La Silla, Chile.

Nearby Optical Galaxies: Selection of the Sample and Identification of Groups
In this paper we describe the Nearby Optical Galaxy (NOG) sample, whichis a complete, distance-limited (cz<=6000 km s-1) andmagnitude-limited (B<=14) sample of ~7000 optical galaxies. Thesample covers 2/3 (8.27 sr) of the sky (|b|>20deg) andappears to have a good completeness in redshift (97%). We select thesample on the basis of homogenized corrected total blue magnitudes inorder to minimize systematic effects in galaxy sampling. We identify thegroups in this sample by means of both the hierarchical and thepercolation ``friends-of-friends'' methods. The resulting catalogs ofloose groups appear to be similar and are among the largest catalogs ofgroups currently available. Most of the NOG galaxies (~60%) are found tobe members of galaxy pairs (~580 pairs for a total of ~15% of objects)or groups with at least three members (~500 groups for a total of ~45%of objects). About 40% of galaxies are left ungrouped (field galaxies).We illustrate the main features of the NOG galaxy distribution. Comparedto previous optical and IRAS galaxy samples, the NOG provides a densersampling of the galaxy distribution in the nearby universe. Given itslarge sky coverage, the identification of groups, and its high-densitysampling, the NOG is suited to the analysis of the galaxy density fieldof the nearby universe, especially on small scales.

Compact Radio Emission from Warm Infrared Galaxies
In this paper, we present a comparison between the optical spectroscopicdata and the incidence of compact radio emission for a sample of 60 warminfrared galaxies. We find that 80% of optically classified activegalactic nucleus (AGN)-type galaxies contain compact radio sources,while 37% of optically classified starburst galaxies contain compactradio sources. The compact radio luminosity shows a bimodaldistribution, indicating two populations in our sample. The majority ofthe higher radio luminosity class (L>104Lsolar) are AGNs, while the majority of the lower radioluminosity class (L<104 Lsolar) are starbursts.The compact radio emission in the starburst galaxies may be due toeither obscured AGNs or complexes of extremely luminous supernovae suchas that seen in Arp 220. The incidence of optically classified AGNsincreases with increasing far-infrared (FIR) luminosity. Using FIRcolor-color diagrams, we find that globally the energetics of 92% of thegalaxies in our sample are dominated by starburst activity, including60% of galaxies that we find to contain AGNs on the basis of theiroptical classification. The remainder are energetically dominated bytheir AGNs in the infrared. For starburst galaxies, electron densityincreases with dust temperature, consistent with the merger model forinfrared galaxies.

Small-amplitude density waves in galactic discs with radial gradients
Stellar discs of highly flattened giant galaxies, including that of theMilky Way, are studied by linear theory to determine the stability ofsuch discs against small-amplitude gravity perturbations. In order tounderstand the physics of the problem better, the simplest theoreticalmodel is applied. That is, the local disc is studied by employing themethod of particle orbit theory. In this purely Lagrangian method, anapproximate solution of the Newtonian equations of the motion of starsis obtained using a general technique based upon the perturbationmethod. In the second order of Lindblad's epicyclic theory, expressionsare found for the unperturbed motions of stars in a stationary systemwith an axially symmetric mass distribution. Then, expressions are foundfor the perturbed motions of stars when the small non-axisymmetricgravity perturbation is additionally taken into account. The perturbedterms are obtained as second-order oscillations. To describe the orderedbehaviour of a medium near its quasi-equilibrium state, these equationsfor the trajectories of stars are used to obtain the dispersion relationthat connects the frequency of excited collective oscillations with thewavenumber throughout the disc, including resonant regions. Using thedispersion relation, a new class of gradient microinstabilities of anon-uniformly rotating disc inherent in an inhomogeneous system isdiscussed. The Landau mechanism of excitation of spiral density wavesworks at the corotation resonance between stars and hydrodynamically(Jeans) stable perturbations (e.g. those produced by a bar-likestructure, a spontaneous perturbation and/or a companion galaxy). Aphysical aetiology of the gradient microinstabilities of collisionlessstellar discs is explained. Such instabilities can develop only if theinhomogeneous and non-uniformly rotating disc of stars is Jeans-stable.Certain astronomical implications of the theory for actual galaxies areexplored as well. In particular, the development of these instabilitiesof a stellar disc can result directly in the formation of differentobservable structural features, e.g. spiral arms and collisionlessdynamical relaxation of the system on the Hubble time-scale.

Cosmic Masks Still Dance
The Hubble classification scheme of galaxies is based on their opticalappearance or `masks'. As one goes from early to late type spirals, bothbarred and unbarred, the optical appearance will be dominated more andmore by the young Population I, i.e., blue stars and dust. Atlasesreveal the rich variety of responses of the Population I component ofgas and dust (the mask) to the underlying, older, stellar population.However, the gaseous Population I component, may only constitute 5percent of the dynamical mass of the galaxy. Masks of negligible massmay conceal the human face - and that of galaxy. In the near-infrared,the morphology of older star-dominated disk indicates a simpleclassification scheme: the dominant Fourier m-mode in the dustpenetrated regime, and the associated pitch angle. A ubiquity of low m=1and m=2 modes is confirmed. On the basis of deprojected H (1.65 μm)and K' (2.1μm) images, we propose that the evolved stellar disks maybe grouped into three principal dust penetrated archetypes: those withtightly wound stellar arms characterised by pitch angles at K' of ~10^° (the α class), an intermediate group with pitch angles of~ 25^° (the β class) and thirdly, those with open spiralsdemarcated by pitch angles at K' of ~ 40^° (the γ bin). Flator falling rotation curves give rise to the tightly wound α class;rising rotation curves are associated with the open γ class. Theobserved dust penetrated classes are inextricably related to the rate ofshear in the stellar disk, as determined by A/ω. Here A is thefirst Oort constant andω denotes the angular velocity. There is nocorrelation between our dust penetrated classes and optical Hubblebinning; the Hubble tuning fork does not constrain the morphology of theold stellar Population II disks. NGC 3223 and NGC 7083 (both SbI-II andalmost the same absolute blue magnitude) have identical Hubble types andidentical luminosity classes; the dust penetrated disk of NGC 3223 hastightly wrapped arms of class α, whereas the near-infrared disk ofNGC 7083 has open arms of class γ. This is in turn associated withtheir very different rotation curve shapes yielding different rates ofshear A/ω in their stellar disks. Any specific dust penetratedarchetype may be the resident disk of both an early or late type galaxy.The number of arms and the pitch angle of the arms at K' of theearly-type `a' spiral NGC 718 are almost identical to those for thelate-type `c' spiral NGC 309. We demonstrate that galaxies on oppositeends of the tuning fork can display remarkably similar evolved diskmorphologies and belong to the same dust penetrated class. In thissense, there is no differentiation between an early and late typegalaxy: the Hubble tuning fork becomes a circle. Furthermore, aprototypically flocculent galaxy such as NGC 5055 (Elmegreen arm class3) can have an evolved disk morphology almost identical to that of NGC5861, characterised in the optical as having one of the most regularspiral patterns known and of Elmegreen class 12. Both opticallyflocculent or grand design galaxies can reside within the same dustpenetrated morphological bin. As was suggested by Block et al. (1994a),it is the gas dominated Population I component which determines theoptical types (a, b, c). This may be partially or even fully decoupledfrom the Population II disk. Those L=lopsided galaxies (where m=1 is adominant mode) are designated Lα, Lβ and Lγ accordingto the dust penetrated pitch angle; E=evensided galaxies (where m=2 isthe dominant Fourier mode) are classified into classes Eα, Eβand Eγ, according to our three principal dust penetratedarchetypes. The L and E modes are the most common morphologies in oursample, which spans a range of Hubble types from early (a) to late(irregular).

An Infrared Search for Extinguished Supernovae in Starburst Galaxies
IR and radio-band observations of heavily extinguished regions instarburst galaxies suggest a high supernova (SN) rate associated withsuch regions. Optically measured SN rates may therefore underestimatethe total SN rate by factors of up to 10, as a result of the very highextinction (A_B~10-20 mag) to core-collapse SNe in starburst regions.The IR/radio SN rates come from a variety of indirect means, however,which suffer from model dependence and other problems. We describe adirect measurement of the SN rate from a regular patrol of starburstgalaxies done with K'-band imaging to minimize the effects ofextinction. A collection of K'-band measurements of core-collapse SNenear maximum light is presented. Such measurements (excluding 1987A) arenot well reported in the literature. Results of a preliminary K'-bandsearch, using the MIRC camera at the Wyoming Infrared Observatory and animproved search strategy using the new ORCA optics, are described. Amonthly patrol of a sample of IRAS bright (mostly starburst) galaxieswithin 25 Mpc should yield 1-6 SNe yr^-1, corresponding to the range ofestimated SN rates. Our initial MIRC search with low resolution (2.2"pixels) failed to find extinguished SNe in the IRAS galaxies, limitingthe SN rate outside the nucleus (at greater than 15" radius) to lessthan 3.8 far-IR SN rate units (SNe per century per 10^10 L_solarmeasured at 60 and 100 mum, or FIRSRU) at 90% confidence. The MIRCcamera had insufficient resolution to search nuclear starburst regions,where starburst and SN activity is concentrated; therefore, we wereunable to rigorously test the hypothesis of high SN rates in heavilyobscured star-forming regions. We conclude that high-resolution nuclearSN searches in starburst galaxies with small fields are more productivethan low-resolution, large-field searches, even for our sample of large(often several arcminutes) galaxies. With our ORCA high-resolutionoptics, we could limit the total SN rate to less than 1.3 FIRSRU at 90%confidence in 3 years of observations, lower than most estimates.

A search for candidate light echoes: Photometry of supernova environments
Supernova (SN) light echoes could be a powerful tool for determiningdistances to galaxies geometrically, \cite[Sparks (1994)]{S94}. In thispaper we present CCD photometry of the environments of 64 historicalsupernovae, the first results of a program designed to search for lightechoes from these SNe. We commonly find patches of optical emission at,or close to, the sites of the supernovae. The color distribution ofthese patches is broad, and generally consistent with stellar populationcolors, possibly with some reddening. However there are in additionpatches with both unusually red and unusually blue colors. We expectlight echoes to be blue, and while none of the objects are quite as bluein V-R as the known light echo of SN 1991T, there are features that areunusually blue and we identify these as candidate light echoes forfollow-on observations. Tables 2a and 2b are also available at the CDSvia anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/Abstract.html and Figs. 1 through 36 are onlyavailable in the online version of the journal athttp://www.edpsciences.com

Toward a dust penetrated classification of the evolved stellar Population II disks of galaxies
To derive a coherent physical framework for the excitation of spiralstructure in galaxies, one must consider the co-existence of twodifferent dynamical components: a gas-dominated Population I disk (OBassociations, HII regions, cold interstellar HI gas) and an evolvedstellar Population II component. The Hubble classification scheme has asits focus, the morphology of the Population I component only. In thenear-infrared, the morphology of evolved stellar disks indicates asimple classification scheme: the dominant Fourier m-mode in the dustpenetrated regime, and the associated pitch angle. On the basis ofdeprojected K' (2.1microns ) images, we propose that the evolved stellardisks may be grouped into three principal dust penetrated archetypes:those with tightly wound stellar arms characterised by pitch angles atK' of ~ 10(deg) (the alpha class), an intermediate group with pitchangles of ~ 25(deg) (the beta class) and thirdly, those with openspirals demarcated by pitch angles at K' of ~ 40(deg) (the gamma bin).There is no correlation between our dust penetrated classes and opticalHubble binning; the Hubble tuning fork does not constrain the morphologyof the old stellar Population II disks. Any specific dust penetratedarchetype may be the resident disk of both an early or late type galaxy.The number of arms and the pitch angle of the arms at K' of theearly-type `a' spiral NGC 718 are almost identical to those for thelate-type `c' spiral NGC 309. We demonstrate that galaxies on oppositeends of the tuning fork can display remarkably similar evolved diskmorphologies and belong to the same dust penetrated class. Furthermore,a prototypically flocculent galaxy such as NGC 5055 (Elmegreen arm class3) can have an evolved disk morphology almost identical to that of NGC5861, characterised in the optical as having one of the most regularspiral patterns known and of Elmegreen class 12. Both opticallyflocculent or grand design galaxies can reside within the same dustpenetrated morphological bin. As was suggested by Block et al.(\cite{block94a}), it is the gas dominated Population I component whichdetermines the optical types (a, b, c), decoupled from the PopulationII. Those L=lopsided galaxies (where m=1 is a dominant mode) aredesignated Lalpha , Lbeta and Lgamma according to the dust penetratedpitch angle; E=evensided galaxies (where m=2 is the dominant Fouriermode) are classified into classes Ealpha , Ebeta and Egamma , accordingto our three principal dust penetrated archetypes. The L and E modes arethe most common morphologies in our sample, which spans a range ofHubble types from early (a) to late (irregular). Having formulated ourdust penetrated classification scheme here, we have tested it on anindependent sample of 45 face-on galaxies observed in the near-infraredby Seigar and James (\cite{seigar98a}, b).

Optical Classification of Megamaser Galaxies
We have obtained spectroscopic observations of the nuclear regions of 42galaxies known to harbor strong OH masers. These megamaser galaxiesrepresent a subsample of FIR (ultra)luminous galaxies, which typicallyhave FIR luminosities in excess of 10^11 L_ȯ. The primary goal ofthis study is to investigate the nuclear activity sources of OHmegamaser galaxies. We are able to classify the nuclear emission-linespectra of all but one of our sample, and we find that this class ofgalaxies is dominated by active galactic nuclei (AGNs), althoughstarburst galaxies do make up an appreciable fraction of the megamasersas well. Fully 45% of the megamasers exhibit Seyfert or LINER spectra,predominantly of Seyfert 2 type, although two galaxies with broad linesare observed. This observation is consistent with the currentunification models for the two types of Seyfert activity, since theassumed geometry necessary to detect a megamaser places the Seyfertnucleus behind a high column density of molecular gas (i.e., themolecular torus). Starburst-nucleus galaxies comprise 32.5% of oursample, while 22.5% are classified as ``composite nuclear spectra''(CSN) sources, showing evidence of both AGN and starburst activity. Anumber of objects show unusual emission-line ratios, not surprising fora group of galaxies that are known a priori to possess substantialabsorbing material along the line of sight to their nuclei. Our resultsare compared to previous studies of FIR-selected galaxy samples, as wellas to radio-continuum observations of these galaxies. The activityclassification obtained from the radio data disagrees with the opticalclassifications in roughly 25% of the sources; we discuss possibleexplanations for these discrepancies.

Bulge-Disk Decomposition of 659 Spiral and Lenticular Galaxy Brightness Profiles
We present one of the largest homogeneous sets of spiral and lenticulargalaxy brightness profile decompositions completed to date. The 659galaxies in our sample have been fitted with a de Vaucouleurs law forthe bulge component and an inner-truncated exponential for the diskcomponent. Of the 659 galaxies in the sample, 620 were successfullyfitted with the chosen fitting functions. The fits are generally welldefined, with more than 90% having rms deviations from the observedprofile of less than 0.35 mag. We find no correlations of fittingquality, as measured by these rms residuals, with either morphologicaltype or inclination. Similarly, the estimated errors of the fittedcoefficients show no significant trends with type or inclination. Thesedecompositions form a useful basis for the study of the lightdistributions of spiral and lenticular galaxies. The object base issufficiently large that well-defined samples of galaxies can be selectedfrom it.

The Southern Sky Redshift Survey
We report redshifts, magnitudes, and morphological classifications for5369 galaxies with m_B <= 15.5 and for 57 galaxies fainter than thislimit, in two regions covering a total of 1.70 sr in the southerncelestial hemisphere. The galaxy catalog is drawn primarily from thelist of nonstellar objects identified in the Hubble Space TelescopeGuide Star Catalog (GSC). The galaxies have positions accurate to ~1"and magnitudes with an rms scatter of ~0.3 mag. We compute magnitudes(m_SSRS2) from the relation between instrumental GSC magnitudes and thephotometry by Lauberts & Valentijn. From a comparison with CCDphotometry, we find that our system is homogeneous across the sky andcorresponds to magnitudes measured at the isophotal level ~26 magarcsec^-2. The precision of the radial velocities is ~40 km s^-1, andthe redshift survey is more than 99% complete to the m_SSRS2 = 15.5 maglimit. This sample is in the direction opposite that of the CfA2; incombination the two surveys provide an important database for studies ofthe properties of galaxies and their large-scale distribution in thenearby universe. Based on observations obtained at Cerro TololoInter-American Observatory, National Optical Astronomy Observatories,operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy,Inc., under cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation;Complejo Astronomico El Leoncito, operated under agreement between theConsejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas de laRepública Argentina and the National Universities of La Plata,Córdoba, and San Juan; the European Southern Observatory, LaSilla, Chile, partially under the bilateral ESO-ObservatórioNacional agreement; Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory;Laboratório Nacional de Astrofísica, Brazil; and the SouthAfrican Astronomical Observatory.

Total magnitude, radius, colour indices, colour gradients and photometric type of galaxies
We present a catalogue of aperture photometry of galaxies, in UBVRI,assembled from three different origins: (i) an update of the catalogueof Buta et al. (1995) (ii) published photometric profiles and (iii)aperture photometry performed on CCD images. We explored different setsof growth curves to fit these data: (i) The Sersic law, (ii) The net ofgrowth curves used for the preparation of the RC3 and (iii) A linearinterpolation between the de Vaucouleurs (r(1/4) ) and exponential laws.Finally we adopted the latter solution. Fitting these growth curves, wederive (1) the total magnitude, (2) the effective radius, (3) the colourindices and (4) gradients and (5) the photometric type of 5169 galaxies.The photometric type is defined to statistically match the revisedmorphologic type and parametrizes the shape of the growth curve. It iscoded from -9, for very concentrated galaxies, to +10, for diffusegalaxies. Based in part on observations collected at the Haute-ProvenceObservatory.

A catalogue of spatially resolved kinematics of galaxies: Bibliography
We present a catalogue of galaxies for which spatially resolved data ontheir internal kinematics have been published; there is no a priorirestriction regarding their morphological type. The catalogue lists thereferences to the articles where the data are published, as well as acoded description of these data: observed emission or absorption lines,velocity or velocity dispersion, radial profile or 2D field, positionangle. Tables 1, 2, and 3 are proposed in electronic form only, and areavailable from the CDS, via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (to130.79.128.5) or via http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/Abstract.html

Stellar disks of optically flocculent and grand design spirals. Decoupling of stellar and gaseous disks
Accurate surface photometry of five spiral galaxies (NGC3223, NGC 5085, NGC5247, NGC 5861 and NGC7083) in visual and near-infrared bands is presented. Allgalaxies show grand design spiral structure in {{K(') }} althoughseveral have a flocculent appearance on blue images suggesting thatstellar and gaseous disks are decoupled. The decomposition of the {{K(')}} maps in axisymmetric components suggests that both a spherical bulgeand a flat exponential disk are required to explain the lightdistribution in the bulge regions. The central disk has a short scalelength and sky projection parameters similar to the main disk. The scalelength of the main exponential disk measured in the interarm region isconsistently smaller than the value determined from the arms for threeof the galaxies. Weak oval distortions were found in three galaxieswhile only one was classified as such. The galaxies with ovaldistortions have less concentrated and fainter bulges than those in thetwo galaxies without such ovals. Model rotation curves were constructedfor each galaxy based on the axisymmetric decomposition of their {{K(')}} surface brightness maps and observed velocity data. The mass-to-lightratio estimated in {{K(') }} for the disk component was around 0.7 insolar units for all galaxies using the disk scale length derived fromthe interarm regions. Pitch angles of the main two-armed spiralestimated in B,V,I and {{K(') }} show a systematic trend of arms beingtighter in bluer colors which suggests the presence of density waves inthe galaxies. Comparing the extent of the spiral pattern in the galaxieswith their angular velocity curves, the best agreement was obtained whenthe symmetric, two-armed spiral starts just outside ILR and terminatesaround the 4:1 resonance. The spirals continue beyond this region butare weaker and more fragmented. The pattern speed estimated for the twoSb galaxies was significantly higher than that for the Sc galaxies.Several galaxies have dust spirals inside the main stellar spiral. Inmost cases, the main spiral pattern is more open in the inner regionthan further out where it is well approximated with a logarithmicspiral. This may support a scenario where a central oval distortiondrives the spiral, which then would correspond to the long wavedsolution of the dispersion relation. Based on observations collected atthe European Southern Observatory, La~Silla, Chile

Homogeneous Velocity-Distance Data for Peculiar Velocity Analysis. III. The Mark III Catalog of Galaxy Peculiar Velocities
This is the third in a series of papers in which we assemble and analyzea homogeneous catalog of peculiar velocity data. In Papers I and II, wedescribed the Tully-Fisher (TF) redshift-distance samples thatconstitute the bulk of the catalog and our methodology for obtainingmutually consistent TF calibrations for these samples. In this paper, wesupply further technical details of the treatment of the data andpresent a subset of the catalog in tabular form. The full catalog, knownas the Mark III Catalog of Galaxy Peculiar Velocities, is available inaccessible on-line databases, as described herein. The electroniccatalog incorporates not only the TF samples discussed in Papers I andII but also elliptical galaxy Dn- sigma samples originally presentedelsewhere. The relative zero pointing of the elliptical and spiral datasets is discussed here. The basic elements of the Mark III Catalog arethe observables for each object (redshift, magnitude, velocity width,etc.) and inferred distances derived from the TF or Dn- sigma relations.Distances obtained from both the forward and inverse TF relations aretabulated for the spirals. Malmquist bias--corrected distances arecomputed for each catalog object using density fields obtained from theIRAS 1.2 Jy redshift survey. Distances for both individual objects andgroups are provided. A variety of auxiliary data, including distancesand local densities predicted from the IRAS redshift surveyreconstruction method, are tabulated as well. We study the distributionsof TF residuals for three of our samples and conclude that they are wellapproximated as Gaussian. However, for the Mathewson et al. sample wedemonstrate a significant decrease in TF scatter with increasingvelocity width. We test for, but find no evidence of, a correlationbetween TF residuals and galaxy morphology. Finally, we derivetransformations that map the apparent magnitude and velocity width datafor each spiral sample onto a common system. This permits theapplication of analysis methods that assume that a unique TF relationdescribes the entire sample.

Parameters of 2447 Southern Spiral Galaxies for Use in the Tully-Fisher Relation
I-band luminosities, rotational velocities, and redshifts of 1092 spiralgalaxies have been measured by CCD photometry and Hα spectroscopyusing the 1 m and 2.3 m telescopes at Siding Spring Observatory,respectively. The results are tabulated. Luminosity profiles andHα rotation curves are given for the galaxies. When these resultsare combined with similar data for 1355 spiral galaxies publishedpreviously (Mathewson, Ford, & Buchhorn, hereafter Paper I), itprovides a large, uniform, and unique data set with which to measure,via the Tully-Fisher relation, the peculiar velocities of galaxies inthe local universe to a distance of 11,000 km s^-1^ (Mathewson &Ford). Taking advantage of the opportunity for publishing this data inmachine-readable form, in the CD-ROM, we have also included similar datafor the 1355 galaxies in Paper I.

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Right ascension:15h09m15.90s
Aparent dimensions:3.02′ × 1.349′

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NGC 2000.0NGC 5861

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