Breathtaking Galaxy Amid the Dense Coma Cluster

A majestic face-on spiral galaxy located deep within the Coma Cluster of galaxies. Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)


The Coma Cluster is a huge, densely populated cluster, with thousands of galaxies closely bunched together. Amid the bedlam of ellipticals, lenticulars and irregulars is this majestic face-on spiral galaxy known as NGC 4911. Hubble stared long and deep to get this highly detailed image of this particular galaxy located deep within the Coma Cluster. Data from three different years and 28 hours of exposure time were combined to capture this breathtaking look at spiral arms, glowing newborn star clusters and iridescent pink clouds of hydrogen, meaning there is ongoing star formation.

The Coma Cluster lies 320 million light-years away in the northern constellation Coma Berenices. As usual for clusters like this, there are only a few young spirals galaxies, and Hubble magnificently captured one of them in all its glory, using long exposure times with the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 and the Advanced Camera for Surveys.

Source: HubbleSite