NGC 2442: 飞鱼座的星系



NGC 2442: Galaxy in Volans
Image Credit & Copyright:
Nicolas Rolland, Martin Pugh

Explanation: Distorted galaxy NGC 2442 can be found in the southern constellation of the flying fish, (Piscis) Volans. Located about 50 million light-years away, the galaxy’s two spiral arms extending from a pronounced central bar give it a hook-shaped appearance in this deep colorful image, with spiky foreground stars scattered across the telescopic field of view. The image also reveals the distant galaxy’s obscuring dust lanes, young blue star clusters and reddish star forming regions surrounding a core of yellowish light from an older population of stars. But the star forming regions seem more concentrated along the drawn-out (upper right) spiral arm. The distorted structure is likely the result of an ancient close encounter with the smaller galaxy seen near the top left of the frame. The two interacting galaxies are separated by about 150,000 light-years at the estimated distance of NGC 2442.

Tomorrow’s picture: Messier 57

NGC 2442: 飞鱼座的星系
Nicolas Rolland, Martin Pugh

说明: 扭曲的星系NGC 2442位于南天的飞鱼座之内。离我们约5千万光年远的这个星系,拥有2道从鲜明的棒状核心伸出的螺旋臂,造就了这幅深空彩色影像里的钩状外观。而在这片望远镜视野里,还可见到散布在各处的带芒前景恒星。除此之外,这张影像也呈现了此遥远星系、由较年老世代恒星聚成的核心之泛黄星光,及其周围的遮光尘埃带、年轻泛蓝星团、和泛红的恒星形成区。不过,恒星形成区似乎较集中在拉伸的(右上)螺旋臂上。此星系扭曲的结构,可能是与视野左上角附近的小星系,在远古时期发生近距离接近所致。以NGC 2442的估算距离来换算,这两个互扰星系相隔约150,000光年。

明日的图片: Messier 57