--- your online source for astronomical & satellite images ---
One Amongst Millions
NGC 2608, Arp 12
Barred Spiral galaxy
RA 8h 35m 17.23s Dec 28° 28' 27.42"
93 million light-years
2.3 x 1.4 arcmin
2.24 x 2.00 arcminutes
North is 12.6° left of vertical
ESA/Hubble & NASA, A. Riess et al.
June 8, 2020
Click the image to buy a print
Looking deep into the Universe, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope catches a passing glimpse of the numerous arm-like structures that sweep around this barred spiral galaxy, known as NGC 2608. Appearing as a slightly stretched, smaller version of our Milky Way, the peppered blue and red spiral arms are anchored together by the prominent horizontal central bar of the galaxy.
In Hubble photos, bright Milky Way stars will sometimes appear as pinpoints of light with prominent lens flares. A star with these features is seen in the lower right corner of the image, and another can be spotted just above the pale center of the galaxy. The majority of the fainter points around NGC 2608, however, lack these features, and upon closer inspection they are revealed to be thousands of distant galaxies. NGC 2608 is just one among an uncountable number of kindred structures.
Similar expanses of galaxies can be observed in other Hubble images such as the Hubble Deep Field which recorded over 3000 galaxies in one field of view.
NGC 2608 (also known as Arp 12) is a barred spiral galaxy located 93 million light-years away in the constellation Cancer (the Crab). It is 62,000 light-years across, and about 60% of the width of the Milky Way. It is considered a grand design spiral galaxy and is classified as SB(s)b, meaning that the galaxy's arms wind moderately (neither tightly nor loosely) around the prominent central bar.
was classified by Halton Arp (1927-2013) under "galaxies with split
arms" in his 1966 Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies who noted that the "nucleus
may be double or superposed star." NGC 2608 is now considered to
be a pair of interacting galaxies. It was discovered by William Herschel
on March 12, 1785.