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A cosmic question in NGC 4696

A cosmic question in NGC 4696

Date: 12 August 2010
Satellite: Hubble Space Telescope
Depicts: NGC 4696
Copyright: ESA/Hubble and NASA

This picture, taken by Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys, shows NGC 4696, the largest galaxy in the Centaurus Cluster.

The huge dust lane, around 30 000 light-years across, that sweeps across the face of the galaxy makes NGC 4696 look different from most other elliptical galaxies. Viewed at certain wavelengths, strange thin filaments of ionised hydrogen are visible within it. In this picture, these structures are visible as a subtle marbling effect across the galaxy’s bright centre.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
25-Apr-2024 12:39 UT

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