Hubble Space Telescope delivers ethereal views of six galaxy collisions

Hubble Space Telescope delivers ethereal views of six galaxy collisions

The Hubble Space Telescope team began 2021 with images of six different galaxy mergers. From left to right top: NGC 3256, NGC 1614, NGC 4194. Lower: NGC 3690, NGC 6052, NGC 34.


Let me tell you about birds and bees and galaxies. Occasionally, two galaxies merge together. This is a rare occurrence with spectacular results, including a baby boom of the stars. NASA and the European Space Agency’s Hubble Space Telescope have gifted us with six rare ideas of galaxy mergers, and each one of them is a winner.

“The ESA released images to celebrate the beginning of 2021,” the ESA said in a statement on Thursday. These systems are excellent laboratories for detecting the formation of star clusters under extreme physical conditions. Star clusters are exactly what they like: clusters of stars.

The Galaxy NGC 3256 is located 100 million light years away and is the reason for its muddled presence in a cut-off merger.

ESA / Hubble, NASA

The galaxies all display signs of their wild past. The ESA describes the galaxy NGC 3256 as strange and distorted. NGC 3690 is a “supernova factory”, and the image of NGC 6052 shows the process of two galaxies colliding.

The Hubble Imaging Investigation of Extreme Environments and Clusters (Hypec) survey focused on star clusters inside galaxies and what happens to them when they merge into their host systems. Collisions feed into the formation of new stars, which increase the stellar birth rate.

The ESA stated, “The Milky Way usually forms mass-star clusters that are 10 thousand times the mass of our Sun.” “It does not compare to the mass of star clusters formed in colliding galaxies, which can reach millions of times the mass of our Sun.”

HiPEEC researchers found that large star clusters in merged galaxies remain very luminous even after the merging action has subsided. Although the merger can be dramatic for the galaxies involved, viewers on Earth can see beautiful results for Hubble’s keen eye.

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