Updated October 29th, 2019 at 18:16 IST

NASA posts 'Ghost face' photo of 2 colliding galaxies before Halloween

As America prepares for the spooky festival of Halloween, its space agency NASA on Monday, released a photo of two galaxies colliding with each other.

Suchitra Karthikeyan
| Image:self

As America prepares for the spooky festival of Halloween, its space agency NASA on Monday, released a photo of two galaxies colliding with each other. On closer observation, the photo resembles an alien face with two glowing, shiny, yellow eyeholes. The photo shows a blue elongated face formed by the two colliding galaxies on the starry background, captured by NASA's Hubble telescope which is a  joint project from NASA and ESA.

NASA's Halloween post - 'Ghost face'

"Each 'eye' is the bright core of a galaxy, the result of one galaxy slamming into another," NASA said in a release Monday. It added, "The outline of the face is a ring of young blue stars. Other clumps of new stars form a nose and mouth."

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Here is the photo shared by NASA:

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What is 'Ghost face'?

Detailing the two colliding galaxies, the European Space Agency (ESA) stated that the galaxy system is called Arp-Madore 2026-424 and is located 704 million light-years away, in its official Hubble website. It added that this violent encounter gives the system an arresting ring structure for a limited time. The crash has pulled and stretched the galaxies’ discs of gas, dust, and stars outward, forming the ring of intense star formation that shapes the “nose” and “face” features of the system, explained ESA.

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NASA's previous Halloween posts 

Reports state that in 2018, the Hubble Telescope had spotted a 'Bat Shadow in the Serpent's Tail' during a Halloween. The image shows part of a star-forming region called the Serpens Nebula which resides at the tail of the Serpent constellation, as per reports. The image bore a close resemblance to Batman's Bat-signal, which had made space fans rejoice. But, it was an 'analog of what the solar system looked like when it was only 1 or 2 million years old', as per a Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) astronomer.

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Webb telescope fully assembled

Meanwhile, in August, the Hubble telescope's successor the James Webb Space Telescope (Webb) was assembled completely for the first time at Northrop Grumman’s facilities in Redondo Beach, California. The telescope which will be launched into space in 2021, as revealed by NASA, is currently undergoing its final tests in the laboratory. Touted as NASA's most powerful and complex space telescope, the Webb Telescope will explore the cosmos using infrared light, from planets and moons throughout the universe, according to NASA. NASA has been developing Webb for over a year.


Published October 29th, 2019 at 17:57 IST

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