Magnificent island universe
NGC 2403 stands
within the boundaries
of the long-necked constellation
Some 10 million light-years distant and about 50,000 light-years
across, the spiral galaxy also seems to have more
than its fair share of giant star forming
marked by the telltale reddish glow of atomic hydrogen gas.
In fact, NGC 2403 closely resembles another galaxy with an
abundance of star forming regions that lies
within our own local galaxy group,
the Triangulum Galaxy.
Of course, supernova explosions
follow close on the heels of
the formation of
massive, short-lived stars and
in 2004 one of the brightest supernovae discovered in recent
times was found in NGC 2403.
Easy to confuse with a foreground star in our own Milky Way Galaxy,
the powerful supernova
is seen here as the spiky, bright "star" at
the left edge
of the field.
This stunning cosmic portrait
is a composite of space and ground-based
image data from the Hubble Legacy Archive
and the 8.2 meter Subaru Telescope at the summit of
Mauna Kea, Hawaii.
Image Data -
Hubble Legacy Archive;