The morphology of the Magellanic Clouds revealed by stars of different age: results from the DENIS survey
The spatial distribution of sources populating different regions of the colour–magnitude diagram (I −J,I) extracted from the DENIS catalogue towards the Mag- ellanic Clouds (DCMC – Cioni et al. 2000) reveal signifi- cantly different morphologies. Each region is associated to a different age group. The Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) shows an extended circular shape with a prominent, off center bar, a nucleus and irregular spiral arms. The Small Magellanic Cloud shows a perturbated structure with a prominent central concentration of stars. Old and young populations are offset from one another.