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Arp 194, An optical illusion (Hubble Heritage), 


            Ruben Barbosa

Arp 194, An optical illusion (Hubble Heritage)

Technical card

Imaging telescope or lens:Hubble Space Telescope

Software:Maxim DL, Gimp

Resolution: 2696x1768

B-band F450W: 1x8800" bin 1x1
I-band F814W: 1x4000" bin 1x1
V-band F555W: 1x4000" bin 1x1

Integration: 4.7 hours job: 1615564


* Acquisition: NASA/ESA/Hubble Heritage
* Processing: Ruben Barbosa

When we observe this image, we quickly conclude that the galaxies PGC 101374 (left) and PGC 37639 (right) are in gravitational interaction and connected by a bridge of bluish material.

We made two mistakes, two optical illusions. The first is that the galaxy on the left is farther away than the one on the right. The second relates to the perception of only two galaxies when the image shows at least four.

A closer look will reveal that in the lower right there are two bright nuclei that correspond to two galaxies in an initial process of fusion. A fourth spiral galaxy, can be observed slightly above the previous two. These three galaxies (right side of the image) lie 600 million years in the direction of the Cepheus constellation.

The details of the interactions between the multiple galaxies that make Arp 194 are complex. The system was probably interrupted by an earlier collision or close encounter and the forms of all involved galaxies turned out to be distorted.

So what is the explanation for the stream of blue material we see in the image? Certainly it will be related to gravitational interactions of the three galaxies that will have released galactic material in this direction, extending for 100,000 light-years in length, and which gave rise to a zone of intense formation of hot and massive stars, giving the blue tone that characterizes it.



Ruben Barbosa
License: None (All rights reserved)


Arp 194, An optical illusion (Hubble Heritage), 


            Ruben Barbosa

In these public groups

Hubble Legacy Archive