IR to UV

When I worked in the audio business, we used to jokingly describe a wide band system as working from dc to daylight. This picture of the M101 (aka, the Pinwheel Galaxy) uses images taken in the infrared, visible, ultraviolet and X-rays from four of NASA’s space-based telescopes. The wide-spectrum view shows that both young and old stars are evenly distributed along the galaxy’s spiral arms. Composite images allow astronomers to see how features in one part of the spectrum match up with those seen in other parts. It is like seeing with IR night-vision goggles, a regular camera, an ultraviolet camera, and X-ray vision, all at the same time.

The Pinwheel Galaxy is in the constellation of the Big Dipper. It is about 70 percent larger than our own Milky Way Galaxy and about 21 million light years from Earth.

Image Credit: NASA

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