Galactic Tranquility

Esahubble_potw2202a_1024

esahubble_potw2202a January 10th, 2022

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, D. Jones, A. Riess et al.

The lazily winding spiral arms of the spectacular galaxy NGC 976 fill the frame of this image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. This spiral galaxy lies around 150 million light-years from the Milky Way in the constellation Aries. Despite its tranquil appearance, NGC 976 has played host to one of the most violent astronomical phenomena known — a supernova explosion. These cataclysmicly violent events take place at the end of the lives of massive stars, and can outshine entire galaxies for a short period. While supernovae mark the deaths of massive stars, they are also responsible for the creation of heavy elements that are incorporated into later generations of stars and planets. Supernovae are also a useful aid for astronomers who measure the distances to faraway galaxies. The amount of energy thrown out into space by supernova explosions is very uniform, allowing astronomers to estimate their distances from how bright they appear to be when viewed from Earth. This image — which was created using data from Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3 — comes from a large collection of Hubble observations of nearby galaxies which host supernovae as well as a pulsating class of stars known as Cepheid variables. Both Cepheids and supernovae are used to measure astronomical distances, and galaxies containing both objects provide useful natural laboratories where the two methods can be calibrated against one another.

Provider: Hubble Space Telescope | ESA

Image Source: https://esahubble.org/images/potw2202a/

Curator: ESA/Hubble, Baltimore, MD, United States

Image Use Policy: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
NGC 976
Esahubble_potw2202a_128
 

Position Details

Position (ICRS)
RA = 2h 33m 59.3s
DEC = 20° 58’ 39.3”
Orientation
North is 31.2° CW
Field of View
1.7 x 2.2 arcminutes
Constellation
Aries

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Red Hubble (WFC3) Infrared (H) 1.6 µm
Green Hubble (WFC3) Optical (I) 814.0 nm
Blue Hubble (WFC3) Optical (V) 555.0 nm
Luminosity Hubble (WFC3) Optical (Long pass) 350.0 nm
Spectrum_base
Red
Green
Blue
Luminosity
Esahubble_potw2202a_1280
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ID
potw2202a
Subject Category
Subject Name
NGC 976
Credits
ESA/Hubble & NASA, D. Jones, A. Riess et al.
Release Date
2022-01-10T06:00:00
Lightyears
Redshift
Reference Url
https://esahubble.org/images/potw2202a/
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Distance Notes
Facility
Hubble Space Telescope, Hubble Space Telescope, Hubble Space Telescope, Hubble Space Telescope
Instrument
WFC3, WFC3, WFC3, WFC3
Color Assignment
Red, Green, Blue, Luminosity
Band
Infrared, Optical, Optical, Optical
Bandpass
H, I, V, Long pass
Central Wavelength
1600, 814, 555, 350
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
None, None, None, None
Notes
Coordinate Frame
ICRS
Equinox
J2000
Reference Value
38.4969181457223, 20.977576697102734
Reference Dimension
2649.0, 3288.0
Reference Pixel
1324.5, 1644.0
Scale
-1.100479423824466e-05, 1.100479423824466e-05
Rotation
-31.159999999999911
Coordinate System Projection:
TAN
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
ESA/Hubble
URL
https://esahubble.org
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
ESA Office, Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Dr
City
Baltimore
State/Province
MD
Postal Code
21218
Country
United States
Rights
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
Publisher
ESA/Hubble
Publisher ID
esahubble
Resource ID
potw2202a
Metadata Date
2021-12-17T23:44:54+01:00
Metadata Version
1.1
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

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There is no distance meta data in this image.

 

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