Astronomy Picture of the Day

A Large Magellanic Cloud Deep Field

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A Large Magellanic Cloud Deep Field

Is this a spiral galaxy?

No. Actually, it is the
Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), the largest
satellite galaxy of our own
Milky Way Galaxy.

The LMC is
classified as a
dwarf irregular galaxy because of its normally chaotic appearance.

In this deep and wide exposure, however, the full extent of the
LMC becomes visible.

Surprisingly, during longer exposures, the
LMC begins to resemble a
barred spiral galaxy.

Large Magellanic Cloud lies only about 180,000
distant towards the constellation of

Spanning about 15,000 light-years, the LMC was the site of
the brightest and closest
in modern times.

Together with the
Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), the LMC can
be seen in Earth's southern hemisphere with the unaided eye.

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