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.
Curated content from the editorial staff at Cosmos Magazine.
Read science facts, not fiction...
There’s never been a more important time to explain the facts, cherish evidence-based knowledge and to showcase the latest scientific, technological and engineering breakthroughs. Cosmos is published by The Royal Institution of Australia, a charity dedicated to connecting people with the world of science. Financial contributions, however big or small, help us provide access to trusted science information at a time when the world needs it most. Please support us by making a donation or purchasing a subscription today.