NASA’s Hubble Telescope has given us some awe-inspiring images since it was launched by the space agency. From comets to the first-ever wandering black hole and everything in between, we have had a glimpse of all. This time it has managed to capture two galaxies that appear to be colliding with each other.
In a recent Hubble Space Telescope image, two galaxies are shown to be colliding. However, the two galaxies, known as SDSS J115 and LEDA 2073461, are close to each other but not actually interacting with each other. The image was posted on the telescope’s Twitter page. According to the space agency, the two galaxies might be like ships that are passing through the night sky.
It’s all about perspective! In this #HubbleFriday image, these two galaxies appear to collide – in reality, they aren’t interacting and might be like ships passing in the night,” The Hubble Space Telescope tweeted with the image of the galaxies. Despite the seemingly odd alignment, the two galaxies are actually not colliding. According to NASA, Hubble has also captured a variety of truly interacting galaxies. While these two appear to be merely passing through the night sky, the space agency claims that the telescope has also captured images where galaxies are actually interacting.
Hubble’s recent observation is related to the Galaxy Zoo project, which is a citizen science initiative that involves collecting data about the universe. Through the project, volunteers are able to classify thousands of galaxies. The volunteers of the project are the first to set eyes on an astronomical object and are usually the first to spot cosmic objects through the telescope.
During the course of the Galaxy Zoo project, the volunteers were able to spot a variety of unusual and wonderful space objects. Some of these include three-armed spiral galaxies, colliding ring galaxies, and unusual cosmic objects such as black holes and comets. Although the project’s astronomers applied for time with Hubble to observe the most unusual objects in the Galaxy Zoo, the public voted on which ones should be viewed.
Several years ago the Hubble telescope managed to take images of Antennae galaxies interacting with each other. They were the sharpest set of images of merging pairs of galaxies. ” During the course of the collision, billions of stars will be formed. The brightest and most compact of these star birth regions are called super star clusters,” said NASA in its blog. Such images help space scientists to better distinguish between the stars and super star clusters created during the collision of two spiral galaxies.