General, Research, Technology

The strangest galaxies in the universe

The galaxy is a huge system of stars, planets,gas and dust, which are gravitationally bound to each other. Our solar system, for example, is part of the Milky Way galaxy, which is believed to contain over 100 billion other stars. In general, researchers believe that the number of galaxies in the universe exceeds two trillion. Moreover, most galaxies fall under well-defined classifications and have either a spiral shape, like the Milky Way, or an elliptical or irregular shape. But in the vastness of the infinite universe there are galaxies that defy classification. While some strange and bizarre galaxies are the result of gravitational interactions with other more massive and sometimes less massive objects, they have one thing in common: they are more like an artist's fantasy than real, tangible collections of billions of stars. Introducing the strangest galaxies known to mankind today.

To date, only a few are knownring galaxies like the Hog's Object located in the constellation Serpent 600 light-years from Earth. Discovered in 1950 by the American astronomer Arthur Hoge.


  • 1 Edwin Hubble's classification of galaxies
  • 2 Galaxy Black Eye (M64)
  • 3 Galaxy South wheel (M83)
  • 4 Sombrero Galaxy (M104)
  • 5 Galaxy Centaurus A (NGC 5128)
  • 6 Galaxy NGC474

Edwin Hubble's classification of galaxies

The classification of galaxies developed by astronomer Edwin Hubble in the twenties of the last century.

The first step to understanding many different phenomenathere can often be a classification. To this end, the eminent astronomer Edwin Hubble studied a large sample of galaxy images in the 1920s and classified them according to their characteristics. In his work, Hubble proposed to classify galaxies into three main types: elliptical, spiral and irregular. Astronomers today use a sequence developed by Hubble to classify different galaxies to help them accurately study individual galaxies.

See also: Do ​​galaxies without dark matter actually exist?

Black Eye Galaxy (M64)

The Black Eye Galaxy (M64)
Type: Spiral Galaxy
Constellation: Hair of Veronica

M64 is located 17 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Coma Veronica.

Despite the myriad of colorful and brightgalaxies in the universe, M64 stands out from their background, reminiscent of the vibrant science fiction magazine covers of the 1950s. Stars in this galaxy are forming in huge numbers, as evidenced by the red light in the Hubble Space Telescope image above. But what's really strange is that M64 consists of two galaxies stuck together with different directions of rotation. The interior of the system rotates one way, while the stars and dust in the outer parts (about 40,000 light years away) rotate the other way.

Messier 64's conspicuous dark structure is a conspicuous dusty feature in the galaxy, hiding the stars behind.

Southern Wheel Galaxy (M83)

The Southern Pinwheel Galaxy
Type: Barred Spiral Galaxy
Constellation: Hydra

The southern wheel galaxy is approximately 15 million light-years distant.

There are many beautiful galaxies in the universe, butthis one, also known as Messier 83, stands alone. The peculiarity of this galaxy is the large number of supernova explosions. Eight active supernovae are currently under observation, but the remains of hundreds more have been noted. The reasons for the large number of supernovae are still unknown, but what is understandable is the huge number of active star forming regions, which are shown in pink in the image. The pink color is the result of the enormous amount of ultraviolet light generated by millions of young, new stars, striking the surrounding clouds of gas and dust. The beauty.

Sombrero Galaxy (M104)

Sombrero Galaxy
Type: Unbarred Spiral Galaxy
Constellation: Virgo

The Sombrero Galaxy is located 29.3 million light years from the Sun. According to Spitzer's observations, M104 is two galaxies: the flat spiral is inside the elliptical.

Discovered in 1781, the Sombrero galaxygot its name from the protruding central part and the rib of the dark dusty substance. Usually the center or core of a galaxy consists of one homogeneous set of stars, however, in the case of M104, the core consists of several clearly separated clusters of stars, although this is not so easy to see in optical light. For many years, astronomers have found it difficult to explain the presence of a dust strip surrounding the core. That changed in February 2020 when a team of astronomers led by Paul Goudfrooij analyzed observational data from the Hubble Space Telescope. The results showed that the galaxy M104 was formed as a result of a powerful collision of large galaxies. Scientists came to this conclusion by measuring the metallicity of the halo stars, which are located far from the center and disk of the galaxy.

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Galaxy Centaurus A (NGC 5128)

Galaxy Centaurus A
Type: Elliptical Galaxy
Constellation: Centaurus

Centaurus A is one of the closest galaxies to us, located at a distance of 12 million light years

Galaxy Centaurus A, as seen in the photo above,strange. In optical light, NGC 5128 appears to be a huge elliptical galaxy, but the really strange thing is that at higher frequencies, a deeply hidden spiral becomes visible. The spiral component is currently thought to be the remnants of a spiral galaxy that was once consumed by a larger, more massive elliptical galaxy. However, it is highly unlikely that this interaction would have left the spiral intact or even recognizable. The above image clearly shows the preserved spiral structure of NGC 5128.

Galaxy NGC474

Galaxy NGC474
Type: Elliptical Galaxy
Constellation: Pisces

Discovered by William Herschel in 1784. Numerous luminous shells reveal the unexpectedly complex structure of this galaxy

If the southern wheel galaxy looks likeactive galaxies should look like, then NGC474 is exactly the variant of how elliptical galaxies should not look. The picture in front of you is not the impression of an artist after reading a science fiction novel, but a real-life galaxy, which is torn apart by the tidal influences of a spiral galaxy behind and above it. However, it is precisely because of the rarefied shells of gas and dust that give this galaxy the appearance of a jellyfish that we know that many, if not most of the known galaxies have similar shells of gas around them. The researchers believe this is a direct result of collisions with other galaxies in the (cosmologically speaking) recent past.

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