Category: Numbers

Galactic Niner

Credit: NASA, ESA, the Hub­ble Her­itage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Col­lab­o­ra­tion, and W. Keel (Uni­ver­sity of Alabama, Tuscaloosa)

Merg­ing together to form the num­ber 9, two galax­ies com­prise AM0500-620.

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Credit: The Hub­ble Her­itage Team (STScI/AURA/NASA)

Eight-BurstShaped like the num­ber eight, astronomers in the south­ern hemi­sphere call this the Eight-Burst or the South­ern Ring Neb­ula. NGC 3132 is a plan­e­tary neb­ula. The name “plan­e­tary neb­ula” refers to the shape of the neb­ula. Astronomers in the 17th and 18th cen­turies found many objects in the night sky that resem­bled plan­ets. But the expand­ing shells of gas and dust are all that is left of a star that has reached the end of its life.

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Mirror 7

Credit: NASA, ESA, the Hub­ble Her­itage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Col­lab­o­ra­tion, and A. Evans (Uni­ver­sity of Vir­ginia, Charlottesville/NRAO/Stony Brook University)

Form­ing the num­ber seven, the inter­act­ing galax­ies that make up NGC 5331 mir­ror each other as they begin to link spi­ral arms.

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Swirl 6

Credit: NASA, ESA, The Hub­ble Her­itage Team (STScI/AURA)

Locked in a grace­ful, gravity-induced dance with another galaxy, NGC 3808 appears as a swirling num­ber six.

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Spiral 5

Credit: NASA and The Hub­ble Her­itage Team (STScI/AURA)

The swirling arms of NGC 3310 blaze the num­ber five in this image from NASA’s Hub­ble Space Telescope.

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The ancient peo­ples saw pic­tures in the sky. From those pat­terns in the heav­ens, ancient sto­ry­tellers cre­ated leg­ends about heroes, maid­ens, drag­ons, bears, cen­taurs, dogs and myth­i­cal crea­tures…
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