Spiral galaxies make up about 70 percent of all observed galaxies, some with large central bulges and tightly wound spiral arms like a fast-spinning ice skater, some with more wide-open arms and smaller bulges and some in various in-between states. NGC 2008, seen here in an image captured by the Hubble Space Telescope, is an Sc galaxy, with S signifying its spiral form and c indicating a small central bulge. The galaxy, located about 425 million miles from Earth in the constellation Pictor, was discovered in 1834 by astronomer John Herschel.
A ghostly “head” stares out from the depths of space in this Hubble Space Telescope image of two galaxies crashing into each other 704 light years away, a captivating harbinger of Halloween. The photo was captured in an ongoing survey of interacting galaxies to learn more about how such systems evolve.
ESA’s Planck satellite has revealed that the first stars in the universe started forming later than previous observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background indicated. This new analysis also shows that these stars were the only sources needed to account for reionising atoms in the cosmos, having completed half of this process when the universe had reached an age of 700 million years.