A ‘wispy’ galaxy features a glorious new photo from the Hubble Space Telescope, which is 4 billion light-years from us.
Called GAMA 526784, the galaxy represents one of a set of “ultra-diffuse” galaxies that are puzzling astronomers. These galaxies are ghostly star collections with inherent brightness and low luminosity. Scientists believe “ultra-diffuse” galaxies are so dim because these galaxies do not contain the gas needed to fuel star birth.
One mystery concerning this galaxy type is the strangely high (or low) amount of dark matter or matter in the universe made up of material scientists have never seen, officials with the ESP (European Space Agency), which is a partner on the Hubble mission, said in a statement.
European Space Agency added that Ultra-diffuse galaxies also have an unusual number of bright globular clusters or dense groups of old stars. The agency said this phenomenon is “not observed in other types of galaxies,” the agency said but did not elaborate on the implications.
“This image comes from a set of Hubble observations designed to shed light on the properties of ultra-diffuse galaxies,” European Space Agency said of the new work.
“Hubble’s keen vision allowed astronomers to study GAMA 526784 in high resolution at ultraviolet wavelengths, helping to gauge the sizes and ages of the compact star-forming regions studding the galaxy.”
The image was acquired using Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys, in operation since 2002.