| NGC 1784 is a fairly unremarkable barred-spiral galaxy at first glance.
However, studying even the seemingly common may reveal unique aspects that
help forward our understanding of the universe. Recently astronomer Doug
Ratay studied this particular galaxy and found some interesting things. By
observing this galaxy in radio wavelengths of light he was able to map the
distribution of hydrogen gas both in and surrounding NGC 1784. He found
that the envelope of gas that surrounds this galaxy extends well beyond
(about twice the diameter) the optical image. Furthermore, he found
a clump of gas that could be a very small galaxy orbiting NGC 1784 as well
as stream of gas encircling another part of the galaxy. All of these features
are very similar to our own Milky Way as we have absorbed small galaxies
in the past and currently doing the same to the Magellanic clouds right now.
Studying how NGC 1784 does this in its environment might help us understand
our own. NGC 1784
is around 100 million light years away.
|L R G B color production was used to create this image.||
Minimum credit line: Adam Block/NOAO/AURA/NSF
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