|This spiral galaxy currently holds a unique distinction in that it
is one of the furthest galaxies in which Cepheid variables have been
detected. These special variable stars have a specific relationship
between their period and brightness. Astronomers measure the periods of
these stars to learn how bright they are. With this knowledge they can
measure the distance to these stars. In general galaxies are so far away
even the best telescopes in the world cannot resolve individual stars. However
in some of our nearby galactic neighbors it is possible. From these measurements
M100 is estimated to be 56 million light years away.
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|L R G B color production was used to create this image.||
Minimum credit line: Curt and Sally King/Adam Block/NOAO/AURA/NSF
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