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NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

Hubble's Galaxy Full of Cosmic Lighthouses

9 Mar 2018, 15:56 UTC
Hubble's Galaxy Full of Cosmic Lighthouses NASA/ESA

This enchanting spiral galaxy can be found in the constellation of Ursa Major (the Great Bear). Star-studded NGC 3972 lies about 65 million light-years away from Earth, meaning that the light that we see now left it 65 million years ago, just when the dinosaurs became extinct.

NGC 3972 has had its fair share of dramatic events. In 2011 astronomers observed the explosion of a Type Ia supernova in the galaxy (not visible in this image). These dazzling objects all peak at the same brightness, and are brilliant enough to be seen over large distances.

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