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Scary Cosmic Sights For Halloween Night

29 Oct 2019, 16:14 UTC
Scary Cosmic Sights For Halloween Night
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This new Hubble Space Telescope photo from June 19, 2019 captures two equal-sized galaxies in a collision that look like a face with two owl-like eyes. Residing 704 million light-years from Earth, this system is catalogued as Arp-Madore 2026-424 (AM 2026-424). NASA, ESA, J. Dalcanton, B.F. Williams and M. Durbin
Planning some Halloween fun? Let the cosmos help. The universe was made for Halloween with its numbing emptiness, subzero dark and curdled nebulae. In celebration of the day, this new image from the Hubble Space Telescope captures two galaxies of equal size in a collision that appears to resemble a ghostly face.
Although galaxy collisions are common — especially in the early universe when the distances between galaxies was much smaller — most are not head-on impacts like the one that likely created this Arp-Madore system 704 million light-years from Earth. Given all the empty space between stars, it’s highly unlikely any stars crashed into each other in the slam, but the violent encounter has created a striking wreath of stars around the duo. The galaxies’ mutual gravities have pulled and stretched their disk of gas, dust and stars outward to form a ring of intense star formation in the ...

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