The James Webb Space Telescope has captured a fresh, dazzling image of the Cartwheel Galaxy. This rare ring galaxy is roughly 500 million light-years away in the Sculptor constellation. NASA says the galaxy is really a rare sight. This new galaxy image does a lot more than just showcase its beautiful appearance. In addition, it gives us insight into how it has changed over vast amounts of years.
Webb captures impressive image of the Cartwheel Galaxy
The Cartwheel Galaxy gets its name because of its insane appearance, which looks much like a wagon wheel. This appearance, however, isnt natural. Instead, this rare ring galaxy was formed whenever a large spiral galaxy and an inferior galaxy collided. The collision created a cascade of smaller events between your two.
Possibly the collisions perhaps most obviously influence on this rare galaxy is its shape and structure. The Cartwheel Galaxy includes two rights, a brighter inner ring, and a colorful outer ring. NASA says that both rings expand outward from the biggest market of the galactic collision. Think about them like ripples in a pond once you toss a rock in to the serene water.
Due to its unique design, astronomers make reference to the Cartwheel Galaxy as a ring galaxy. And its own actually among the less common galaxy types weve within the universe so far.
Two rings are much better than one
What’s interesting concerning this ring galaxy is that all ring is vastly different. The inner ring of the Cartwheel Galaxy is filled up with hot dust and the brightest spots in the image are home to young star clusters, NASA notes. The outer ring has expanded in the last 440 million years. Supernovas and star formations dominate this ring.
This outer ring can be fueling ongoing star formations since it expands. Thats as the ring plots into surrounding gas and triggers the forming of new stars. Up to now, Webbs observations of the Cartwheel Galaxy show it to stay an extremely transitory stage. It’ll continue steadily to expand and transform for an incredible number of a long time.
Webbs image of the galaxy also provides some insight into its past, and we are able to continue steadily to watch since it changes in the foreseeable future.