Gallery: 65 All-Time Great Galaxy Hits

Spiral Galaxies May Die From Within

Hubble Heritage Site [Full Story]

This beautiful image is from the Hubble Space Telescope and shows the galaxy NGC 1300 which is a classic example of a barred spiral.


ESA/Herschel/PACS/SPIRE/J.Fritz, U.Gent/XMM-Newton/EPIC/W. Pietsch, MPE

This image of the Andromeda Galaxy is a composite of an infrared photo from ESA's Herschel space telescope and the XMM-Newton’s X-ray telescope. The infrared frame shows rings of dust that trace gaseous reservoirs where new stars are forming and the X-ray image shows stars approaching the ends of their lives.

The Whirlpool Galaxy

NASA, ESA, M. Regan and B. Whitmore (STScI), R. Chandar (University of Toledo), S. Beckwith (STScI), and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

The Whirlpool Galaxy, AKA spiral galaxy M51, sports a new look when seen in near-infrared light by the Hubble Space Telescope. With most of the starlight removed, this image provides the sharpest view of the dust structure of the galaxy to date.

Messier 82

NASA/CXC/Wesleyan Univ./R.Kilgard et al.

Messier 82 (M82) galaxy, known as a starburst galaxy, produces stars at rate tens or even hundreds of times faster than in normal galaxies. Astronomers believe that a brush with neighboring galaxy M81 millions of years ago, creating shock waves, set off this blast of star formation.

NGC 157


In this image of galaxy NGC 157, the spiral arms appear to form a giant "S". The HAWK-I instrument (High-Acuity Wide-field K-band Imager) on ESO's Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile produced this picture of the galaxy. NCG 157 lies distantly in the constellation of Cetus (the Sea Monster).

NGC 2841

NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration; M. Crockett and S. Kaviraj (Oxford University, UK), R. O'Connell (Univ. of Virginia), B. Whitmore (STScI) and the WFC3 Scientific Oversight Committee.

The galaxy NGC 2841 — shown here in a Hubble image — currently has a relatively low star formation rate compared to other spirals. It is one of several nearby galaxies that have been chosen for a new study, in which scientists are observing a variety of different stellar nursery environments and birth rates.

Dust in the Wind(ing Spiral Arms)


This WISE image shows dust speckling the Andromeda galaxy's spiral arms. The hot dust, heated by newborn stars, outlines the thin arms to the center of the galaxy.

NGC 5584

NASA, ESA, A. Riess (STScI/JHU), L. Macri (Texas A&M University), and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

Blue young stars shine in the spiral arms of galaxy NGC 5584, as shown by this Hubble Space Telescope image. Thin, dark dust lanes flow from the yellowish core, filled with older stars. The reddish dots throughout the image are largely background galaxies. Several exposures taken in visible light between January and April 2010 with Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3 combine to make this image.

NGC 1275 Galaxy in Perseus Cluster

NASA/ESA/Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration

This Hubble Space Telescope image shows NGC 1275, the galaxy located in the center of the Perseus Galaxy Cluster. The red threadlike filaments are composed of cool gas suspended by a magnetic field.

Galaxy NGC 4214

NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration. Acknowledgment: R. O’Connell (University of Virginia) and the WFC3 Scientific Oversight Committee

Galaxy NGC 4214 is dominated by a huge glowing cloud of hydrogen gas in which new stars are being born. A heart-shaped hollow — possibly galaxy NGC 4214’s most eye-catching feature — can be seen at the centre of this.

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