A galaxy in bloom

Hydrogen gas makes NGC 972 shine bright.

Roses are red, and galaxies too.

ESA/Hubble, NASA, L. Ho;

This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows bright pockets of star formation blooming like roses in a spiral galaxy named NGC 972.

The orange-pink glow is created as hydrogen gas reacts to the intense light streaming outwards from nearby newborn stars; these bright patches can be seen here amid dark, tangled streams of cosmic dust.

German-British astronomer William Herschel is credited with the discovery of NGC 972 in 1784. Astronomers have since measured its distance, finding it to be just under 70 million light-years.

  1. http://server7.sky-map.org/starview?object_type=2&object_id=699&object_name=NGC+972&locale=EL
  2. https://www.britannica.com/biography/William-Herschel]
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