Photo credit: NASA, ESA, and R. de Jong (Leibniz-Institut fur Astrophysik Potsdam); Image processing: G. Kober (NASA Goddard/Catholic University of America)
NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope captures a stunning image of the ‘Little Sombrero’ galaxy located 40 million light-years from Earth. Also known as NGC 7814 or Caldwell 43, this galaxy consists of a brilliant central bulge, a dust-filled thin disk, and a glowing halo of gas as well as stars that sprawl thinly out into space.
The ‘Little Sombrero’ galaxy is approximately 80,000 light-years-wide and billions of years old. It’s named after its big brother, the Sombrero galaxy, which looks like a galactic version of the iconic hat. When viewed from its edge, the Sombrero galaxy is lies just 28 million light-years away and looks bigger than its smaller counterpart, but in reality, they are nearly the same size. The Sombrero galaxy only appears larger because it is closer. Now we’re just waiting for NVIDIA’s Perlmutter AI supercomputer to create a 3D map of the universe.
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This image of the Little Sombrero is a combination of visible and infrared observations captured by Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys in 2006. The observations were taken to assist astronomers in studying the galaxy’s stellar populations, and to help shed light on the evolution of this galaxy and others like it,” said NASA.