Where In the Universe Challenge #23

Article written: 1 Oct , 2008
Updated: 24 Dec , 2015

Here’s this week’s image for the “Where In The Universe” challenge. Take a look at the image above and guess what this image might be. Extra points if you can name the spacecraft responsible for the image as well. No peeking below before you make your guess. Ready? You may begin….

You probably just knew I had the Hubble Space Telescope on the brain this week. With its data controller failure, I’ve been browsing Hubble images all week, sighing and hoping (thinking happy thoughts, as I said in an earlier post!) I’ve also spent the past few days cleaning out a closet, so this image fits my current state of mind on all fronts. Its a Hubble image of cosmic dust bunnies. In the image are blobs of cosmic dust lie hidden in the giant elliptical galaxy NGC 1316.

I realize its hard to know the names of all the galaxies out there, so you are a winner if you said “galaxy” and “Hubble.”

The image shows dust lanes and star clusters in this giant galaxy. Astronomers say these characteristics give a clue as to how this galaxy was formed.

Astronomers conclude that these dusty star clusters give clear evidence of a major collision of two spiral, gas-rich galaxies. The galaxies would have merged together a few billion years ago to shape NGC 1316 as it appears today.

NGC 1316 is about 75 million light-years away on the outskirts of a nearby cluster of galaxies in the southern constellation of Fornax. It is one of the brightest ellipticals in the Fornax galaxy cluster and is also one of the strongest and largest radio sources in the sky.

See more info about this image at the HubbleSite.

15 Responses

  1. Aodhhan says

    Okay, I mistakenly thought “What it might be” spoke of the composition of the object not its classification. Still… I was stumped either way so it didn’t matter!

    I love the picture though, great find…excellent info; thanks!

  2. Jon Hanford says

    An easy one, Nancy. NGC 1316 = For A = Arp 154 taken with Hubble’s ACS camera. NGC 1317 lies just to the North, out of the picture. One of my favorite galaxies, it resembles a slightly more distant version of NGC 5128. Just a fantastic color mosaic of hungry, active galaxy!

  3. Jorge says

    Nope, galaxies are definitely not my thing. I knew (or at least suspected strongly) it was a Hubble photo, I knew it was a galaxy, but I had no clue which galaxy.

    (and I had an interesting typo here: instead of Hubble, at first I typed Huggle. 🙂 )

  4. dave s says

    Something like this formed over my lovely wifes head once when I came home a little late from the bar.

  5. Vino says

    Ah finally i got atleast one right, Hubble 🙂
    guessed it was a galaxy and dust clouds but not the exact identification… It consoles me to see these pics and feel as if hubble is still there….
    thanks Nancy…

  6. RetardedFishFrog says

    I thought this was one of the ANGST photos mentioned in the article a couple days ago. I guess I get to claim a win on this one. ANGST was the Hubble study of nearby galaxies. This galaxy just happens to be a little outside of the ANGST range.

  7. Jorge says

    Big LOL @ dave 😀

  8. Don Alexander says


    Full score. Fornax A (NGC 1316) by HST, an active galaxy. Very nice shot.

  9. RL says

    I guessed Alderaan. Picture taken by the Death Star.

    OK. I had no idea, but Hubble is my usual catch all answer for spacecraft.

    Cool picture. I thought it was a dust cloud of some kind. I learned something new today!

  10. Astrofiend says

    Had to a be Hubble image of a large elliptical galaxy – there is simply no other imaging device available to us that can get capture that sort of definition in dust shrouding a galaxy.

    And for it to be that bright and clear, even to Hubble, it would almost certainly have to have made the NGC. No Idea which one specifically though…

  11. Astrofiend says

    “# dave s Says:
    October 1st, 2008 at 1:23 pm

    “Something like this formed over my lovely wifes head once when I came home a little late from the bar.”

    🙂 Gold. Her anger was so immense that it formed it’s own gravity field, eh?

  12. Nexus says

    Kapow! Score 1 for Nexus!

  13. Kootstar says

    Dearest Dave, it’s great that you know your lovely wife so well, and a TRUE LOL makes my day!
    (P.S. I guessed Hubble, but have nebula on my mind lately. Oh well, I tried and was half right,)

  14. neoguru says

    Woo Hoo! I guessed an Eliptical Galaxy with local dust, but was not happy with the guess. But assuming I don’t have to give its number, I got it! that’s 17 for 23, or 74%. Still a “D”, but I’m hoping for extra credit. (Yeah, I’m a college teacher. LOL). This was a good one. Difficult but (as demonstrated) doable. I really look forward to these things.

  15. kacie says

    my science teachers says it might be nibbular but my princapal thinks it is nancy

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