Is this gravitational lensing?

I’d like other people’s perspective on this please. The arcing shapes of these galaxy alignments look remarkably similar to some gravitational lens arcs seen from Hubble, but obviously without the resolution needed to make it unambiguous!

Sure looks like it! Since the lens is a cluster, you would expect to see the highly magnified and distorted shapes. This looks like a fairly big cluster, and it’s at redshift z~0.3, so I wouldn’t be totally surprised if this one were known, but I don’t know off-hand where to find that list. There is an SDSS spectrum of the bigger central galaxy, but not the one at 3 o’clock with the highly distorted arc behind it.

My vote is yes, and what a nice, red galaxy, too.

Does anyone know if there is a catalogue of gravitational lensing anywhere that we can check this against?

Otherwise, who can we inform to get it checked out properly?

I know of this one;

but I would have thought there would be a community-wide catalog

This is indeed a known gravitational lens, observed with HST.

Here is the abstract of the proposal;

Resolving the Star Formation in Distant Galaxies

HST Proposal 13003

Michael Gladders

University of Chicago

Proposal Abstract

The fundamental unit of star formation in the Universe is neither a star, nor a galaxy, but a star forming region with a typical scale of at most 100s of parsecs. Even at full HST resolution, these regions are unresolved beyond rather modest redshifts. HST has - and continues to be - heavily invested in studies of distant galaxies, yet has been fundamentally unable to study the relevant physical scales of star formation in the distant Universe. We propose here to overcome this resolution barrier by imaging a total of 73 strongly lensed galaxies at z~1-3 discovered in the SDSS. The combination of the exquisite image quality of HST with the magnification boost due to strong lensing will allow robust measurements of the sizes, luminosities, star formation rates and stellar populations of individual star-forming clumps in these galaxies, providing the first ever comprehensive data on star formation at its fundamental scale over the entire peak of the star formation history in the Universe. The proposed observations build on the extensive legacy of HST deep fields - including the ongoing MCT CANDELS program. A number of ancillary science goals - not least amongst them the study of the lensing systems proper - are also enabled by the proposed data.;

You can find out if it is observed with HST here

You can view it in an interactive webviewer here

looking at the referenced papers in the proposal I don’t know why it wasn’t included in SIMBAD, as all such things should. But perhaps the relevant paper is being processed for just that, I don’t know which one of the listed papers is about this particualr lens.

Hope this hekps


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Gosh that’s a nice HST image!

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wow! Thanks. The HST image makes it absolutely clear!

Actually I am pretty pleased to have found that! :grin:

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