LEDA 36252, a cosmic tadpole
In this new image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, a firestorm of star birth is lighting up one end of the diminutive galaxy LEDA 36252 – also known as Kiso 5649.
The galaxy is a member of a class of galaxies called "tadpoles" because of their bright heads and elongated tails. This galaxy resides relatively nearby, at a distance of 80 million light-years. Tadpoles are rare in the local Universe but common in the distant Universe, suggesting that many galaxies pass through a phase like this as they evolve.
Credit: NASA, ESA, and D. Elmegreen (Vassar College), B. Elmegreen (IBM's Thomas J. Watson Research Center), J. Almeida, C. Munoz-Tunon, and M. Filho (Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias), J. Mendez-Abreu (University of St. Andrews), J. Gallagher (University of Wisconsin-Madison), M. Rafelski (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center), and D. Ceverino (Center for Astronomy at Heidelberg University)