Hubble Captures Sharply Angled Perspective of Spiral Galaxy NGC 3169

Amazing Hubble Image of NGC 3169

NGC 3169 is located about 70 million light-years away in the constellation of Sextans (The Sextant). Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, L. Ho

Every now and then, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope glimpses a common object — say, a spiral galaxy — in an interesting or unusual way. A sharply angled perspective, such as the one shown in this Picture of the Week, can make it seem as if we, the viewers, are craning our necks to see over a barrier into the galaxy’s bright center.

In the case of NGC 3169, this barrier is the thick dust embedded within the galaxy’s spiral arms. Cosmic dust comprises a potpourri of particles, including water ice, hydrocarbons, silicates, and other solid material. It has many origins and sources, from the leftovers of star and planet formation to molecules modified over millions of years by interactions with starlight.

NGC 3169 is located about 70 million light-years away in the constellation of Sextans (The Sextant). It is part of the Leo I Group of galaxies, which, like the Local Group that houses our home galaxy, the Milky Way, is part of a larger galactic congregation known as the Virgo Supercluster.

4 Comments on "Hubble Captures Sharply Angled Perspective of Spiral Galaxy NGC 3169"

  1. Christine Ballone | July 22, 2019 at 8:18 am | Reply

    Every time I see an image like this I am dumbfounded! I imagine the blue dots as nebulas that are light years across knowing that what I see is already millions of years in the past, a distance unimaginable. There has to be life everywhere, no question about it!

  2. How badly does it make you want to go there? The structures in space… the ones that we can see display a beauty that words cannot describe. I don’t know what or how these were all created, although I have my faith that tells me what I believe. Still, it is incomprehensible that we could have been left alone in the infinite cosmos.

  3. Rowland Stevens | July 22, 2019 at 11:15 am | Reply

    There are billions of galaxies at distances that make them irrelevant to humans, in a meaningful way. Unlike, the many pictures of clouds in our sky, some of which may be a source of meaningful information and yet simply because once takes a picture of a cloud, doesn’t mean one should being doing so ….. if it takes huge public resources to take it …… much less to take multiple different pictures simply because they are “a different perspective”.

  4. Jeff Gwaltney | July 23, 2019 at 12:49 pm | Reply

    All these pictures that i’ve ben seeing the pillars for example are they still there this all new to me just got my smartphone last year shows how far in stone age i am

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