Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Odd galaxy couple on space voyage

Date:
September 6, 2012
Source:
Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI)
Summary:
Two very different galaxies drift through space together in a new image taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The peculiar galaxy pair is called Arp 116.

Galaxy pair Arp 116.
Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration

Two very different galaxies drift through space together in a new image taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The peculiar galaxy pair is called Arp 116.

Arp 116 is composed of a giant elliptical galaxy known as Messier 60 (or M60) and a much smaller spiral galaxy, NGC 4647.

M60 is the third brightest galaxy in the Virgo cluster of galaxies, a collection of more than 1,300 galaxies. M60 has a diameter of 120,000 light-years and a mass of about one trillion times that of the Sun. A huge black hole of 4.5 billion solar masses lies at its center, one of the most massive black holes ever found.

The faint bluish spiral galaxy NGC 4647 is about two-thirds of M60 in size and much lower in mass -- roughly the size of our galaxy, the Milky Way.

Astronomers have long tried to determine whether these two galaxies are actually interacting. Although looking at them from Earth they overlap, there is no evidence of new star formation, which would be one of the clearest signs that the two galaxies are indeed interacting. However, recent studies of very detailed Hubble images suggest the onset of some tidal interaction between the two.

M60 lies roughly 54 million light-years away from Earth; NGC 4647 is about 63 million light-years away.

This image combines exposures from Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys and Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). "Odd galaxy couple on space voyage." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120906092527.htm>.
Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). (2012, September 6). Odd galaxy couple on space voyage. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120906092527.htm
Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). "Odd galaxy couple on space voyage." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120906092527.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Space & Time News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Russia Saves Gecko Sex Satellite, Media Has Some Fun With It

Russia Saves Gecko Sex Satellite, Media Has Some Fun With It

Newsy (July 27, 2014) The satellite is back under ground control after a tense few days, but with a gecko sex experiment on board, the media just couldn't help themselves. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
NASA EDGE: OCO-2 Launch

NASA EDGE: OCO-2 Launch

NASA (July 25, 2014) NASA EDGE webcasts live from Vandenberg AFB for the launch of the Oribiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO) launch. Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Week @ NASA, July 25, 2014

This Week @ NASA, July 25, 2014

NASA (July 25, 2014) Apollo 11 celebration, Next Giant Leap anticipation, ISS astronauts appear in the House and more... Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com
Space to Ground: Coming and Going

Space to Ground: Coming and Going

NASA (July 25, 2014) One station cargo ship leaves, another arrives, aquatic research and commercial spinoffs. Questions or comments? Use #spacetoground to talk to us. Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins