Meet an iconic spiral galaxy

This is a particularly photogenic spiral galaxy, called NGC 2903. You can see its pinwheeling spiral arms, scatterings of stars, glowing bursts of gas, and dark lanes of cosmic dust.

Large galaxy with foggy lighted center and spiral arms with pinkish spots along them.

View larger. | This image from the Hubble Space Telescope – first published on April 29, 2019 – shows a classic example of a spiral galaxy. This galaxy is labeled NGC 2903, and it’s located about 30 million light-years away in the constellation Leo the Lion. Hubble surveyed this galaxy as part of a study of the central regions of roughly 145 nearby disk galaxies. This study aimed to help astronomers understand the relationship between the colossal black holes in the cores of galaxies like these, and the bulge of stars, gas, and dust at the galaxy’s center, such as that seen in this image. Image via ESA.

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