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More Than Meets the Eye
RA 19h 11m 23.69s Dec -57° 2' 52.29"
150 million light years
2.4 × 2.1 arcmin
1.84 x 1.83 arcminutes
North is 18.8° right of vertical
ESA/Hubble & NASA, Ack Judy Schmidt
September 18, 2017
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ABOUT THIS IMAGE:
Despite the advances made in past decades, the process of galaxy formation remains an open question in astronomy. Various theories have been suggested, but since galaxies come in all shapes and sizes including elliptical, spiral, and irregular no single theory has so far been able to satisfactorily explain the origins of all the galaxies we see throughout the Universe.
To determine which formation model is correct (if any), astronomers hunt for the telltale signs of various physical processes. One example of this is galactic coronas, which are huge, invisible regions of hot gas that surround a galaxys visible bulk, forming a spheroidal shape. They are so hot that they can be detected by their X-ray emission, far beyond the optical radius of the galaxy. Because they are so wispy, these coronas are extremely difficult to detect. In 2013, astronomers highlighted NGC 6753, imaged here by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, as one of only two known spiral galaxies that were both massive enough and close enough to permit detailed observations of their coronas. Of course, NGC 6753 is only close in astronomical terms the galaxy is nearly 150 million light-years from Earth.
6753 is a whirl of color in this image the bursts of blue throughout
the spiral arms are regions filled with young stars glowing brightly in
ultraviolet light, while redder areas are filled with older stars emitting
in the cooler near-infrared.