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Short for New General Catalogue of Nebulae and Clusters of Stars, prepared by the Danish astronomer J.L.E. Dreyer at Armagh Observatory, Ireland, and published in 1888. It was based on an earlier General Catalogue of Nebulae and Clusters of Stars (GC),compiled in 1864 by Sir John Herschel from his own observations and previous catalogs by his father and aunt, Sir William and Caroline Herschel. Dreyer's work listed 7840 currently known nonstellar objects – nebulae, clusters, and galaxies (although the galaxies were not yet identified as such). Each object is numbered by right ascension and its position and description given. The number is preceded by the letters NGC; this is the object's NGC number, an example being NGC 1976: the Orion nebula. Some of the brightest NGC objects also appear in the Messier Catalog.

Dreyer listed 5386 further discoveries in two supplements to the original NGC. These were the first and second Index Catalogs (IC), published in 1895 and 1908. The three catalogs, now published as one volume, cover the whole sky.

The NGC underwent several revisions during its first hundred years. In 1988, on the centenary of Dreyer's original publication, Roger Sinnott published NGC 2000.0, a version of the NGC and IC containing the positions of 13 226 objects for the epoch 2000.0. In 2001 Wolfgang Steinicke produced a more thorough revision, adding a further 767 objects. The NGC/IC Project, accessible over the World Wide Web, seeks to eliminate observing errors and misidentifications inherent in Dreyer's original work to arrive at a clean version of the NGC and IC, with each object unambiguously numbered and identified and correctly attributed to its discoverer.

References in periodicals archive ?
You'll find half a dozen brighter NGC galaxies, but the glare from these stars can be an annoyance, so use medium or high power and isolate them outside the eyepiece field whenever possible.
The galaxy IC 5160 is only 6' north of the lovely open cluster NGC 7193.
NGC is pleased to expand our relationship with SRI," said Mark Burstein, president of sales, marketing and R&D, NGC.
How do rules and procedures for trading NGC stock affect cooperative formation and vulnerability to takeover?
Most galaxies have black holes that are inconspicuous," says van der Marel, who took the Hubble images of NGC 6240.
NGC Shop Floor Control's daily reporting gives STEPS clear visibility and insight into the productivity of its factory, allowing the company to control costs more effectively.
A neutral-hydrogen bridge connects NGC 2964 and NGC 2968, while a tail reaches out to NGC 2970.
NGC 7041, the northern galaxy, which is quite outstanding against the star field, displays a lovely, very elongated east-west oval with a misty edge.
NGC 6712 may have ventured within 1,000 light-years of the core just a few million years ago.
Through the integration with Threadvine, NGC is helping to revolutionize fashion selling by bringing the power of our PLM and ERP systems to fashion sales representatives," said Mark Burstein, president of sales, marketing and R&D, NGC Software.
NGC 1737 appears small but obvious, with a few knotted patches in its midst.