December 12, 2012
Day 12 of the 2012 Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar, one of 25 photos (eventually). A nearly perfect ring of hot, blue stars pinwheels about the yellow nucleus of an unusual galaxy known as Hoag’s Object. This image captures a face-on view of the galaxy’s ring of stars, revealing more detail than any existing photo of this object. The entire galaxy is about 120,000 light-years wide, which is slightly larger than our Milky Way Galaxy. The blue ring, which is dominated by clusters of young, massive stars, contrasts sharply with the yellow nucleus of mostly older stars. What appears to be a “gap” separating the two stellar populations may actually contain some star clusters that are almost too faint to see. Curiously, an object that bears an uncanny resemblance to Hoag’s Object can be seen in the gap at the one o’clock position. The object is probably a background ring galaxy. (NASA and The Hubble Heritage Team, STScI/AURA)

Day 12 of the 2012 Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar, one of 25 photos (eventually). A nearly perfect ring of hot, blue stars pinwheels about the yellow nucleus of an unusual galaxy known as Hoag’s Object. This image captures a face-on view of the galaxy’s ring of stars, revealing more detail than any existing photo of this object. The entire galaxy is about 120,000 light-years wide, which is slightly larger than our Milky Way Galaxy. The blue ring, which is dominated by clusters of young, massive stars, contrasts sharply with the yellow nucleus of mostly older stars. What appears to be a “gap” separating the two stellar populations may actually contain some star clusters that are almost too faint to see. Curiously, an object that bears an uncanny resemblance to Hoag’s Object can be seen in the gap at the one o’clock position. The object is probably a background ring galaxy. (NASA and The Hubble Heritage Team, STScI/AURA)

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Filed under: hubble astronomy nasa awesome 
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  18. johnflynn reblogged this from rcmclachlan and added:
    Hoag’s Object is awesome.
  19. rcmclachlan reblogged this from atlanticinfocus and added:
    Hoag’s Object has been my favorite galaxy for years. It was going to be my first tattoo before my tattoo artist admitted...
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