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Hubble image of two interacting galaxies

The collision between the Milky Way Galaxy and the Andromeda Galaxy.

Australian National University astrophysicist Brian Schmidt chose this Hubble photo of Supernova SN 1994D as his favorite space image, which he called "the poster child of a type Ia supernovae." The supernova is the bright spot on the lower left, shown near the galaxy NGC 4526. Schmidt won the 2011 Nobel Physics prize for his studies of distant supernovas that helped reveal the existence of dark energy. CREDIT: NASA/ESA, The Hubble Key Project Team and The High-Z Supernova Search Team

Taken with the Hubble, Galaxy

Known as Seyfert's Sextet, this intriguing group of galaxies lies in the head portion of the split constellation of the Snake (Serpens). About 190 million light-years away, the interacting galaxies are tightly packed into a region around 100,000 light-years across, comparable to the size of our own Milky Way galaxy, making this one of the densest known galaxy groups. Bound by gravity, the close-knit group may coalesce into a single large galaxy over the next few billion years.

NGC 1300 by Steven Marx A barred spiral galaxy about 61 million light-years away in the constellation Eridanus. The galaxy is about 110,000 light-years across; just slightly larger than our own galaxy, the Milky Way. It is a member of the Eridanus Cluster, a cluster of 200 galaxies. [**]

A combined image from the Spitzer, Hubble, and Subaru telescopes show this structure to be three galaxies merging into one (NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI/NAOJ/Subaru)

NGC 4565 (also known as the Needle Galaxy) is an edge-on spiral galaxy about 30 to 50 million light-years away in the constellation Coma Berenices. NGC 4565 is a giant spiral galaxy more luminous than the Andromeda Galaxy, and has a population of roughly 240 globular clusters, more than the Milky Way. Click on this image and on the next two images for an up-close look on this galaxy. Photograph: Ken Crawford

Many spiral galaxies have bars across their centers. Even our own Milky Way Galaxy is thought to have a modest central bar. Prominently barred spiral galaxy NGC 1672, pictured above, was captured in spectacular detail in image taken by the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope. Visible are dark filamentary dust lanes, young clusters of bright blue stars, red emission nebulas of glowing hydrogen gas, a long bright bar of stars across the center, and a bright active nucleus that likely houses a supermas