A Big Brother for the Milky Way

NGC 6744This is NGC 6744, one of the galaxies most similar to our Milky Way in the local group of galaxies. From the Earth’s point of view it’s found in the southern sky in the constellation of Pavo (the Peacock) at a distance of about 30 million light-years. This ultraviolet view highlights the vast extent of its spiral arms; NGC 6744 is the Milky Way’s big brother, with a disk stretching 175,000 light-years across. A small, distorted companion galaxy is located nearby, similar to the Large Magellanic Cloud near our galaxy. This companion, called NGC 6744A, can be seen at the upper right as a blob in the main galaxy’s outer arm.

Image Credit: NASA

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