Hubble Space Telescope visible light image "blue blobs"
A Hubble Space Telescope visible light image of bright blue star clusters found along a wispy bridge of gas that was tidally stretched between the two galaxies, and a third companion galaxy not seen in this picture. This is not the place astronomers expect to find star clusters because the density of gas is so low. Turbulence in the gas may have enhanced the density locally to trigger starbirth. The so-called "blue blobs" are clumped together in a structure called Arp's Loop. Hubble reveals the clusters contain the equivalent of five Orion Nebulae. Analysis of the stellar population in the clusters yields an age of approximately 200 million years, which coincides with the epoch of the collision.
NASA, ESA, and D. de Mello (Catholic University of America/GSFC)
About the Image
|Release date:||8 January 2008, 20:00|
|Size:||2586 x 1935 px|
About the Object
|Name:||Holmberg IX, M81, M82|
|Type:||• Local Universe : Star : Grouping : Cluster|
|Distance:||12 million light years|
Colours & filters
|435 nm||Hubble Space Telescope|
|Hubble Space Telescope|
|814 nm||Hubble Space Telescope|