NULL

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Arp 272, two colliding galaxies in a remarkable cosmic portrait!

Arp 272, two colliding galaxies in a remarkable cosmic portrait!
Click on the image for full resolution (1.17 MB)

Arp 272 is a remarkable collision between two spiral galaxies, NGC 6050 and IC 1179, and is part of the Hercules Galaxy Cluster, located in the constellation of Hercules. The galaxy cluster is part of the Great Wall of clusters and superclusters, the largest known structure in the Universe. The two spiral galaxies are linked by their swirling arms. Arp 272 is located some 450 million light-years away from Earth. This image is part of a large collection of 59 images of merging galaxies taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and released on the occasion of its 18th anniversary on 24th April 2008. At that estimated distance, the picture spans over 150 thousand light-years. Although this scenario does look peculiar, galaxy collisions and their eventual mergers are now understood to be common, with Arp 272 representing a stage in this inevitable process. In fact, the nearby large spiral Andromeda Galaxy is known to be approaching our own galaxy and Arp 272 may offer a glimpse of the far future collision between Andromeda and the Milky Way.
The full resolution image weighs 1.17 MB, so please be (a little) patient when downloading!
Credit: NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration and K. Noll (STScI)

0 comment(s):

Post a Comment