A fishhook in the sky


The distant and oddly-shaped galaxy J082354.96.


The starburst galaxy J082354.96.
The starburst galaxy J082354.96.
ESA / Hubble & NASA, M. Hayes

The object in the Hubble photo above is known as J082354.96, a so-called “starburst” galaxy with an unusually high rate of star formation.

It is one of 14 galaxies under investigation in the Lyman Alpha Reference Sample study, which analyses the light emitted by hydrogen atoms. This light is of a known wavelength and it scatters around a lot on dust in a galaxy, so observing the reflections from that dust can produce a lot of information about the galaxy’s makeup.

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