December 18, 2009

Hoag's Object

This nearly perfect ring of hot, blue stars around a yellow nucleus is the very unusual galaxy known as Hoag's Object. The Hubble Space Telescope captured this face-on view of the galaxy's ring of stars, revealing more detail than any other existing photo of this object. The image may help astronomers unravel clues on how such strange objects form.

The entire galaxy is about 120,000 light-years wide, which is slightly larger than our Milky Way Galaxy.

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