NASA Shares Dramatic Image of 2 Galaxies Locked in a Cosmic Dance


NASA has shared a dramatic image of two strange galaxies locked in a cosmic dance. The event was occurring in the constellation Pegasus at a distance of about 220 million light-years from Earth and was captured by the space agency’s powerful Hubble Space Telescope. The image shows the smaller galaxy nearly connected to its larger neighbor by a strand of light-emitting threads. NASA said that the gravitational pull between the two galaxies would eventually result in the smaller galaxy being either thrown into space or consumed by the larger galaxy.

The larger galaxy, named NGC 7753, is clearly visible as a giant structure hanging on a black canvas, while the smaller NGC 7752 appears as an illuminated rock. Together, these galaxies are referred to as “ARP 86”, indicating that they appear in the Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies compiled by astronomer Halton Earp in 1966.

NASA said in Statement Hubble found Arp 86 as part of a larger effort to understand the relationship between young stars and the cold gas clouds in which they form. For these observations, Hubble uses data provided by ALMA, a giant radio telescope located high in the Chilean Andes. The space agency said these Hubble observations provide a “treasury of data” for astronomers trying to understand how stars are born.

Once James Webb Space TelescopeAstronomers will have more detailed observational data sets to study star formation in dusty regions such as Arp 86’s galaxies, a joint project by US and European space agencies, launched later this year.

“Hubble has had an incredible run. Can’t wait to see what JWST will show us!” One user said.

The Hubble Telescope was launched in 1990. Since then it has made more than 1.3 million observations. JWST is scheduled to launch on 18th December.