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Filaments in the Galactic periphery

Filaments in the Galactic periphery

Date: 28 May 2015
Satellite: Herschel
Depicts: Filaments in the Galactic Plane
Copyright: ESA/Herschel/PACS, SPIRE/Hi-GAL Project/Schisano et al. 2014

This three-colour image shows a portion of the Galactic Plane, the huge disc – about 100 000 light-years across – where most of the Milky Way's stars form and reside.

This image spans about 8 degrees across, and covers a peripheral region of the Galactic Plane, towards the edge of our Galaxy. Astronomers have detected about 500 filamentary structures in this image, with lengths ranging from a few to about 30 light-years. The most prominent filaments can be seen in the left-hand side of the image, as well as in the top right corner.

This demonstrates how large-scale filaments fragmenting into compact cores that later evolve into stars have been detected all across the Galaxy, even in its outermost regions.

The image combines Herschel bands at 70 μm (blue), 160 μm (green) and 250 μm (red).

Acknowledgments to Gianluca Li Causi (INAF-IAPS, Italy).

Last Update: 1 September 2019
20-Jun-2024 14:40 UT

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