‘Flying Saucer’ spotted in Space

NASA discovers a galaxy that is similar to the Milky Way

Image source: Express.co.uk

NASA released an image recently of a newfound galaxy, which it refers to as the ‘flying saucer’. This galaxy, eerily similar to our Milky Way, is located very far on the other corner of the Universe.

NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope snapped a beautiful picture of this galaxy which is known as IC 2051. It is reportedly located 85 million light-years away. Isn’t this exciting?

IC 2051

This ‘flying saucer’, as referred to by NASA, is a spiral galaxy. It has the characteristic whirling coupled with the pinwheeling arms and has a bar of stars that are slicing through its centre.

According to NASA, this galaxy was observed for a particular Hubble study on the galactic bulges, which are the bright round central regions of spiral galaxies.

Spiral galaxies such as IC 2051 are usually visualised like a flying saucer when observed from one side. They are made from a thin, flat disk that is surrounded by a bulk of stars from the centre, extending to above and below the disk.

Image Source: Express.co.uk

NASA further stated that these bulges are believed to play a key role in the evolution of galaxies. They influence the growth of the black holes that lurk at the centres of many spirals. Nevertheless, more observations would be needed before any definitive conclusion can be drawn.

Studies suggest that most of these galactic bulges can be complex and composite structures rather than very simple. They comprise a mix of disk-like, box, or spherical components that can potentially lead to a wide array of bulge morphologies in the universe.

Hubble Telescope

All set to retire in 2021, the Hubble Telescope is ready for a much powerful successor – the James Webb Space Telescope. The Hubble has been in service for more than 30 years since its inception in 1990.

Image Source: Express.co.uk

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is named after NASA’s second administrator, James Webb. He served the office from 1961 to 1968, playing a major role in the grand Apollo missions. The JWST is an infrared machine that is powerful enough to reach the furthest realm and check the earliest moments of the universe. It can also scan the presence of alien life on planets that are a thousand light-years away.

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