Astronomy Picture of the Day

NGC 1365: Majestic Island Universe

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NGC 1365: Majestic Island Universe


Barred spiral galaxy
NGC 1365 is truly a majestic
island universe some 200,000
light-years across.

Located a mere 60 million light-years away toward the
chemical constellation
NGC 1365 is a dominant
member of the well-studied
galaxy cluster

This impressively
sharp color image shows intense
star forming regions at the ends of the bar and along the
spiral arms, as well as details of dust lanes cutting
across the galaxy's bright core.

At the core lies a supermassive black hole.

Astronomers think NGC 1365's prominent bar plays a crucial
role in the galaxy's evolution, drawing gas and dust into a
star-forming maelstrom and ultimately feeding material into the
central black hole.

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