The Large Magellanic Cloud (also known as LMC) is a dwarf galaxy that is, in some sense, in orbit around our own Milky Way galaxy. It is at a distance of about fifty kiloparsecs (50,000 parsecs, or 160,000 light years). While somewhat irregular in morphology, it does have some traces of spiral structure.
The Large Magellanic Cloud
It is visible as a faint object in the night sky of the southern hemisphere, straddling the border between the constellations of Dorado and Mensa. It is named after Ferdinand Magellan, who observed it and the companion Small Magellanic Cloud in his circumnavigational voyage around the Earth.
See also: Supernova 1987a