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The massive galaxy cluster MACS J0717 Featured Space Print

The massive galaxy cluster MACS J0717

This composite image shows the massive galaxy cluster MACS J0717.5+3745 (MACS J0717, for short), where four separate galaxy clusters have been involved in a collision, the first time such a phenomenon has been documented. Hot gas is shown in an image from the Chandra X-ray Observatory, and galaxies are shown in an optical image from the Hubble Space Telescope. The hot gas is color-coded to show temperature, where the coolest gas is reddish purple, the hottest gas is blue, and the temperatures in between are purple. MACS J0717 is located about 5.4 billion light-years from Earth. It is one of the most complex galaxy clusters ever seen.
The repeated collisions in MACS J0717 are caused by a 13-million-light-year-long stream of galaxies, gas, and dark matter, known as a filament, pouring into a region already full of matter. A collision between the gas in two or more clusters causes the hot gas to slow down. However, the massive and compact galaxies do not slow down as much as the gas does, and so move ahead of it. Therefore, the speed and direction of each cluster's motion, perpendicular to the line of sight, can be estimated by studying the offset between the average position of the galaxies and the peak in the hot gas

© Stocktrek Images

NGC 6559 is a rich colorful tapestry of diverse nebulosity in the constellation Sagittarius Featured Space Print

NGC 6559 is a rich colorful tapestry of diverse nebulosity in the constellation Sagittarius

NGC 6559 is a rich colorful tapestry of diverse nebulosity in the constellation Sagittarius. The glowing red cloud known as NGC 6559 has formed from the same molecular cloud that gave rise to its neighbor the Lagoon Nebula (M8). The region is awash in young stars, many of which are obscured by the overwhelming dust in the region. Within the nebula complex are several bright blue reflection clouds glowing by way of starlight reflected from innumerable microscopic dust particles enveloping the brighter stars. The two brightest reflection clouds are catalogued as NGC 6559 (south) and IC 1274 (north). The meandering channel of dark dust appearing etched into the background of bright emission is known as B 303. The small conspicuous patch of bright emission towards the southern edge of the complex is known as GN and is likely a small superimposed HII region

© Robert Gendler/Stocktrek Images

Artists concept of an impact crater on Jupiters moon Ganymede, with Jupiter Featured Space Print

Artists concept of an impact crater on Jupiters moon Ganymede, with Jupiter

Artist's concept of an impact crater on Ganymede, about 10 miles in diameter, dominates a scene otherwise defined by a dozen long ridges. In the middle of the crater is a central peak, formed when the energy of the impact liquefied the crust long enough for it to rebound upward and solidify once again.
Immediately above the horizon, Jupiter is still a majestic spectacle, even at a distance of nearly three times that between the Earth and its moon. Much closer on the upper right is Ganymede's sister satellite Europa. At a distance of 307 thousand miles from this vantage point, Europa is only a quarter again as far as the Earth is from its moon. To the lower left of Jupiter at nearly a million miles is Jupiter's volcanic satellite Io.
Jupiter's largest satellite Ganymede has a varying surface, some of which is characterized by rumpled bundles of ridges and grooves that run for hundreds of miles over a frozen surface of water-ice. They probably formed long ago when tectonic forces pulled apart Ganymede's upper crust; similar sets of faults occur in rift zones on Earth, as in eastern Africa. Subsequent meteoritic impacts have peppered, and broken in places, the continuity of the running formations

© Walter Myers/Stocktrek Images