Photo No: H98-14b1
Centaurus A: The Inside Story
Astronomers have used NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope to probe the core of the
nearest active galaxy to Earth, Centaurus A.
A close-up high resolution Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 image of the dramatic dust disk which is thought to be the remnant of a smaller spiral galaxy that merged with the large elliptical galaxy. The shock of the collision compressed interstellar gas, precipitating a flurry of star formation and giving the material a fleecy pattern. Dark filaments of dust mixed with cold hydrogen gas are silhouetted against the incandescent yellow-orange glow from stars behind it.
Credit: E.J. Schreier (STSCI) and NASA