Astronomy Picture of the Day



Messier 96

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zorg.ch
#101778 by @ 16.06.2007 00:00 - nach oben -
Messier 96


Explanation:

Dust lanes seem to swirl around the core of
Messier 96 in this
colorful,
detailed portrait
of the beautiful
island universe.

Of course M96
is a spiral galaxy
,
and counting the faint arms extending
beyond the brighter central region it spans 100 thousand
light-years or so, about the size of our own Milky Way.

M96 is known to be 38 million light-years distant, a dominant
member of the Leo I galaxy group.

Background galaxies and smaller Leo I group members
can be found by examining the picture, but accomplished
astro-imager Adam Block notes he is most intrigued
by the edge-on spiral galaxy that
apparently lies behind
the outer spiral arm near the 10 o'clock position.

The edge-on spiral appears to be about 1/5 the size
of M96.

If the spiral is similar in actual size to M96, then it
lies about 5 times
farther
away
.




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