Andromeda is the nearest major
galaxy to our own
Milky Way Galaxy.
Our Galaxy is thought to look much like
Together these two galaxies dominate the
Local Group of galaxies.
The diffuse light from
is caused by the hundreds of billions of
stars that compose it.
The several distinct stars that surround
are actually stars in
that are well in front of the background object.
Andromeda is frequently referred to as
since it is the 31st object on
Messier's list of diffuse sky objects.
M31 is so distant it takes
about two million years for light to reach us from there.
Although visible without aid, the
above image of M31 was taken with a small telescope.
Much about M31
remains unknown, including how it acquired
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