2011 January 20: Andromeda M31. Two European space observatories teamed up to produce this image of the Andromeda Galaxy. The Herschel space telescope focused on rings of star formation in infrared light, shown here in shades of red and orange. The XMM-Newton probe registered the X-ray emissions from exploding stars, shown here in blue. M31 is the largest Galaxy of the Local Group, which consists of: Andromeda Galaxy, Milky Way Galaxy, Triangulum Galaxy, and at least 30 other smaller…
Also known as the Tarantula nebula, 30 Doradus is a region of the Large Magellanic Cloud and is one of the most active areas of star formation in the night sky. - Image: UT/CTIO Magellanic Cloud Emission Line Survey [high-resolution] - Caption: Wired Science
HD 98800 is a multiple star system right in our section of the Milky Way Galaxy. For years it has been known that HD 98800 consists of two pairs of double stars, with one pair surrounded by a disk of dust. Recent data from the Spitzer Space Telescope in infrared light, however, indicate that the dust disk has gaps that appear consistent with being cleared by planets orbiting in the disk. Pictured above is an artist's drawing of how the HD 98800 system might appear to a nearby observer.
The Andromeda Galaxy - It is 2 million light years away from us...so what we see now is how it appeared 2 million years ago. It will collide with our Milky Way in 2 billions years from now - the two galaxies are heading towards each other at a rate of 430 km/hr! A billion years from now Andromeda will loom as a spectacular site, eventually swelling to fill half of the night sky.