March 7, 2001
Photo No: H2001-08b1 (Visible)
Hubble Spies Huge Clusters of Stars Formed by Ancient Encounter
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope snapped these two views of the heart of
the galaxy M82. The image at left was taken in visible light; the
picture at right, in infrared light. In the infrared view, the
telescope's Near Infrared Camera and Multi-Object Spectrometer peered
through thick dust lanes to find some of the galaxy's more than 100
super star clusters. The clusters are the larger pink and yellow dots
scattered throughout the picture. They were formed during a violent
collision with the galaxy M81 about 600 million years ago. The galaxy
is 12 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Ursa Major.
The pictures were taken Sept. 15, 1997.
Credits: NASA, ESA, R. de Grijs (Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge, UK)