Starburst galaxy Messier 94This is the galaxy Messier 94 which lies about 16 million light-years away. Within the bright ring around Messier 94, new stars are forming at a high rate, so many that that feature is called a starburst ring. This peculiarly-shaped star-forming region is likely the result of a pressure wave going outwards from the galactic center, compressing the gas and dust in the outer region. The compression causes the gas to collapse into denser clouds, and gravity pulls the gas and dust together inside the clouds until temperature and pressure are high enough for stars to be born.

Image Credit: ESA / NASA

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