A Tilted Wonder

The blue and orange stars of the faint galaxy named NGC 2188 sparkle in this image taken with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. Although NGC 2188 appears at first glance to consist solely of a narrow band of stars, it is classified by astronomers as a barred-spiral galaxy. It appears this way from our viewpoint on Earth as the centre and spiral arms of the galaxy are tilted away from us, with only the very narrow outer edge of the galaxy’s disc visible to us. Astronomers liken this occurrence to turning a dinner plate in your hands so you see only its outer edge. The true shape of the galaxy was identified by studying the distribution of the stars in the inner central bulge and outer disc and by observing the stars’ colours.

NGC 2188 is estimated to be just half the size of our Milky Way, at 50 000 light-years across, and it is situated in the constellation of Columba (The Dove). Named in the late 1500s after Noah’s dove in biblical stories, the small constellation consists of many faint yet beautiful stars and astronomical objects.

Credit:

ESA/Hubble & NASA, R. Tully

About the Image

Id:potw2035a
Type:Observation
Release date:31 August 2020, 06:00
Size:3914 x 4100 px

About the Object

Name:NGC 2188
Type:Local Universe : Galaxy : Type : Spiral
Local Universe : Galaxy : Type : Barred
Constellation:Columba
Category:Galaxies

Image Formats

Large JPEG
5.3 MB
Screensize JPEG
325.3 KB

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1024x768
279.1 KB
1280x1024
472.9 KB
1600x1200
734.9 KB
1920x1200
947.7 KB
2048x1536
1.2 MB

Coordinates

Position (RA):6 10 10.61
Position (Dec):-34° 6' 13.48"
Field of view:3.26 x 3.42 arcminutes
Orientation:North is 135.5° left of vertical

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
V
606 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS
Optical
I
814 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS

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