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Mona Evans
Mona Evans • 28 weeks ago

Hoag's Object in the constellation Serpens. A ring galaxy in which there is a central core of older yellow stars with a ring of young blue stars. The formation of a galaxy like this probably involves a galactic collision, but it's still a mystery. If you look closely at the gap, you can see another ring galaxy in the distance.(Credit: R. Lucas (STScI/AURA), Hubble Heritage Team, NASA) Mona Evans, "Cosmic Collisions"

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Hubble’s face-on view of this unusual galaxy, known as Hoag’s Object after Arthur Allen Hoag, who discovered it in 1950, shows its nearly perfect ring of hot, massive, blue stars surrounding a nucleus of older, yellow stars. Ring-shaped galaxies can form either through a collision with another galaxy or when a second galaxy speeds through the first, leaving parts of itself behind. In Hoag's Object, there is evidence that the blue ring may be the shredded remains of a galaxy that passed nearby.