Detailed Hubble Image of the Next Galaxy



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The most detailed image of a nearby 40 billion star galaxy was captured by the Hubble Space Telescope. The Triangular Galaxy, located three million light-years away from the Milky Way, is one of the most distant objects visible to the naked eye. Under dark sky conditions, it appears as a faint and foggy object in the Triangulum (Triangle) constellation and is a target for amateur astronomers. But in a new 665 million-pixel image taken by NASA's European Space Agency (ESA) Hubble Space Telescope, the billions of stars in the spiral galaxy are brilliantly displayed. The spectacular view is actually a giant mosaic, made up of 54 separate images created by Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys. As the second larger image ever launched by Hubble, it encompasses the central region of the galaxy and its inner spiral arms. Millions of stars, hundreds of clusters of stars and bright nebulae are visible. Triangulum, also known as Messier 33 or NGC 598, is part of the Local Group – a collection of more than 50 galaxies, including the Milky Way, which are linked by gravity. According to ESA, it is the third largest galaxy in the group, but also its smallest spiral galaxy. It measures only about 60,000 light years, compared to the 200,000 light-years of the Andromeda Galaxy, which is much larger. In comparison, the spiral of the Milky Way is about 100,000 light-years across. In contrast to the two largest spiral galaxies, Triangulum does not have a bright bulge at its center – and there is also a bar connecting its spiral arms to the center. ESA said the galaxy contains a huge amount of gas and dust, giving rise to the rapid formation of stars. The Andromeda galaxy was mapped by Hubble in 2015, creating the sharpest and largest image of this galaxy and Hubble's greatest image of all time. Australian Associated Press

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