Astronomy Picture of the Day



Spiral Galaxy M83: The Southern Pinwheel

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#102441 by @ 25.07.2007 00:00 - nach oben -
Spiral Galaxy M83: The Southern Pinwheel


Explanation:
M83 is one of
the closest and brightest
spiral galaxies on
the sky.

Visible with binoculars in the constellation of
Hydra, majestic spiral arms
have prompted its nickname as the Southern Pinwheel.

Although discovered 250 years ago,
only
much later
was it appreciated that
M83 was not a nearby gas cloud, but a
barred
spiral galaxy
much like our own
Milky Way Galaxy.

M83, pictured above, is a prominent member
of a group of galaxies that includes
Centaurus A and
NGC 5253, all of which lie about 15 million
light years distant.

Several bright supernova explosions
have been recorded in M83.

An intriguing double
circumnuclear ring
has been discovered
at the center of M83.




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