Bumps in the heavens

Eso_potw2148a_1024

eso_potw2148a November 29th, 2021

Credit: ESO/VST ATLAS team. Acknowledgement: Durham University/CASU/WFAU

Just as people at a busy crossroad may accidentally bump into each other, so too can galaxies in the Universe! But in this case, the outcome is more dramatic than a small nudge. When two galaxies clash, they merge into each other, giving birth to a new, bigger one. One example is the NGC 7727 galaxy, shown in this image from ESO’s VLT Survey Telescope (VST) in Chile. Located 89 million light-years away from Earth in the constellation Aquarius, NGC 7727 is believed to be the result of a clash between two galaxies that occurred about one billion years ago. The consequences of this tremendous cosmic bump are still evident in the peculiar, irregular shape of NGC 7727 and the streams of stars in its outer regions.  The image was taken in visible light as part of the VST-ATLAS survey. The goal of the survey is to map a vast region of the Southern Sky — so large you could fit about 19,000 full moons in it! By studying the galaxies in this region, astronomers aim to shed new light on the nature of dark energy, the mysterious force permeating the Universe and causing its accelerating expansion.

Provider: European Southern Observatory

Image Source: https://www.eso.org/public/images/potw2148a/

Curator: European Southern Observatory, Garching bei München, None, Germany

Image Use Policy: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
NGC 7727
Subject - Local Universe
Galaxy > Type > Interacting
Eso_potw2148a_128
 

Position Details

Position (ICRS)
RA = 23h 39m 54.4s
DEC = -12° 17’ 46.3”
Orientation
North is up
Field of View
12.2 x 11.8 arcminutes
Constellation
Aquarius

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Green VST (OmegaCAM) Optical (r) 625.0 nm
Blue VST (OmegaCAM) Optical (g) 480.0 nm
Red VST (OmegaCAM) Optical (i) 770.0 nm
Spectrum_base
Green
Blue
Red
Eso_potw2148a_1280
×
ID
potw2148a
Subject Category
C.5.1.7  
Subject Name
NGC 7727
Credits
ESO/VST ATLAS team. Acknowledgement: Durham University/CASU/WFAU
Release Date
2021-11-29T06:00:00
Lightyears
Redshift
Reference Url
https://www.eso.org/public/images/potw2148a/
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Distance Notes
Facility
VLT Survey Telescope, VLT Survey Telescope, VLT Survey Telescope
Instrument
OmegaCAM, OmegaCAM, OmegaCAM
Color Assignment
Green, Blue, Red
Band
Optical, Optical, Optical
Bandpass
r, g, i
Central Wavelength
625, 480, 770
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
None, None, None
Notes
Coordinate Frame
ICRS
Equinox
J2000
Reference Value
354.976655897, -12.2961983994
Reference Dimension
3429.0, 3324.0
Reference Pixel
1714.5, 1662.0
Scale
-5.91534705426e-05, 5.91534705426e-05
Rotation
0.020000000000634125
Coordinate System Projection:
TAN
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
European Southern Observatory
URL
https://www.eso.org
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 2
City
Garching bei München
State/Province
None
Postal Code
D-85748
Country
Germany
Rights
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
Publisher
European Southern Observatory
Publisher ID
eso
Resource ID
potw2148a
Metadata Date
2021-11-10T14:35:31+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.