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Hubble space telescope captures great galaxy image

This gigantic image of the Triangulum Galaxy also known as Messier 33 is a composite of about 54 different pointings with Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys. (Credit: NASA, ESA, and M. Durbin, J. Dalcanton, B. F. Williams (University of Washington)

The Hubble Space Telescope has snapped a great picture of the Triangulum Galaxy, 3 million light years from our own milky way Galaxy. The image consists of 665 million pixels, and is made of 54 different photos, an image in the space is so large that it spans “a surface area of more than 19,000 light-years away.”

The Triangulum Galaxy also known as Messier 33 or NGC 598, is a part of the “Local Group”, which means that it is part of the same group of galaxies which the Milky way belongs. It is huge in size, as in the above image is estimated to contain between 10 and 15 million stars, “an order of magnitude fewer stars than the Milky way, and two orders of magnitude smaller than Andromeda,” according to Hubble’s website.

Despite its size in comparison with other galaxies, it is still the third largest galaxy in the group is only 60,000 light years. By comparison, the Andromeda Galaxy is 200,000 light years across and the Milky way is 100,000 light years in diameter.

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A separate statement noted that “as the junior member of this trio of galaxies, Triangulum offers valuable comparisons and contrasts that only a close companion can. In particular, Triangulum star formation is 10 times more intense than in the comparable Hubble panorama of the neighbouring Andromeda galaxy.”

“Under excellent dark-sky conditions, the Triangulum Galaxy can be seen with the naked eye as a faint, fuzzy object in the constellation of Triangulum (the Triangle), where the ethereal glow is an exciting target for amateur astronomers,” Hubble added on the website.

Follow Chris Ciaccia on Twitter @Chris_Ciaccia

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