The Sunflower Galaxy

A galactic sunflowerThis galaxy is called M63 because of its listing the the Messier catalog. It’s also known as the Sunflower Galaxy. M63 has a spiral shape with no central bar feature and moderate to loosely wound arms. The spiral structure isn’t readily apparent in visible light. However, when viewed in the near infrared, the galaxy’s two spiral arms are easily seen. Each arm wraps 150° around the galaxy and extends up to 13,000 light-years from the nucleus.

Image Credit: ESA / NASA

Messier 95

Messier 95 (aka M95 or NGC 3351) is a barred spiral galaxy located about 33 million light-years away in the constellation Leo. It has an an inner ring that surrounds the bar. The ring is star-forming region with a diameter of approximately 2,000 light-years, and the spiral arms extend outward from the ring.

Image Credit: NASA / ESA

A Spider in Space

TaranutlaSeveral million young stars are vying for our attention in this image of a stellar breeding ground in 30 Doradus, located in the heart of the Tarantula Nebula. Early astronomers nicknamed the nebula because its glowing filaments resemble spider legs.

30 Doradus is the brightest star-forming region visible in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a small, satellite galaxy of our Milky Way. It’s home to the most massive stars yet found.

This composite image is one of the largest mosaics ever assembled from Hubble photos and includes multiple observations taken by Hubble‘s Wide Field Camera 3 and Advanced Camera for Surveys. The Hubble images were combined with ground-based data taken with the European Southern Observatory’s 2.2-meter telescope in La Silla, Chile.

Image Credit: NASA / ESA / ESO