Astronomy Picture of the Day



The Outskirts of M77

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zorg.ch
#96925 by @ 08.12.2006 00:00 - nach oben -
The Outskirts of M77


Explanation:

Face-on
spiral galaxy M77
lies a mere 60 million light-years away
toward the aquatic
constellation Cetus.

Also known as NGC 1068, its very bright core
is well studied
by astronomers exploring the mysteries of
supermassive black
holes
in active galaxies.

While M77 is also
seen
at x-ray, ultraviolet, infrared, and radio wavelengths,
this visible light
image
highlights another remarkable aspect
of the galaxy.

In the picture, the data has been enhanced to show
outer faint
details
, following
spiral
arms
and structures that
reach far beyond the galaxy's brighter central regions.

Including the fainter outskirts, the
galaxy's diameter is well over 100 thousand light-years
at M77's estimated distance,
making it larger than our own spiral
Milky Way.




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