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Hubble Views Spiral Galaxy is aimed directly at us



  NGC 3432

Believe it or not, this long, bright strip of bright bubbles and pockets of material is like a spiral galaxy our Milky Way galaxy. But how could that be?

It turns out that we see this galaxy named NGC 3432, which is directly focused on us from our point of view here on Earth. The spiral arms and the bright core of the galaxy are hidden. Instead, we see the thin strip on its outermost foothills. Dark bands of cosmic dust, specks of varying brightness, and pink areas of star formation help to discern the true shape of NGC 3432 ̵

1; but it's still a challenge! Since observatories such as the NASA / ESA Hubble Space Telescope have seen spiral galaxies in any orientation, astronomers can tell when we accidentally caught one from the side.

The galaxy is in the constellation Leo Minor (The Little Lion). Other telescopes targeting NGC 3432 include Sloan Digital Sky Survey, Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX), and Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS).

Credit: ESA / Hubble & NASA, A. Filippenko, R. Jansen


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