I am a native in this world And think in it as a native thinks

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Astronomy Tuesday

This is Arp 188, called the Tadpole Galaxy because of that spectacular tail.

Astronomers theorize that a smaller galaxy got a little too close, and gravity and tidal forces snagged a long tail of stars and gas from the intruder, creating an impressive accessory. Arp 188 is about 420 light years away from us, but that tail is 280,000 light years long.

Like all tadpoles, this galaxy will eventually lose the tail. Gravity will continue to do its job, and those bright blue star clusters will eventually coalesce into satellites of the main galaxy.

Image Credit: Hubble Legacy Archive, ESA, NASA; Processing - Bill Snyder (Heavens Mirror Observatory)

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