Galaxy MCG+07-33-027, about 300 million light-years from Earth, is going through an extraordinarily high rate of star formation — known as “a starburst”.
Where only a couple of new stars are year are born in most galaxies, starburst galaxies can produce 200 a year.
The image above, captured by Hubble space telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS), shows the galaxy’s spiral arms containing the bright star-forming regions.
Star-forming galaxies require a large reservoir of gas, used to give birth to stars over time.
A violent event, such as the collision with another galaxy can trigger a state of starburst, but that is not the case with MCG+07-33-027. It lies in a relatively empty region of the universe.
That has left astronomers to scratch their heads over what may have caused the intense creation of stars.
The bright object to the right of the galaxy is a foreground star in our own galaxy.