Faraway galaxies glow through a starry mist as it angles across this image of NGC 2366 from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope.
Explore the bright star-forming nebula, blue dots and galaxies in this image. What stories or pictures do you see? Leave a note in the comments below.
NGC 2366 is a small dwarf galaxy hanging out only about 10 million light-years from Earth toward the constellation Camelopardalis, the Giraffe. The closest large galaxy is the Andromeda Galaxy, two million light-years away. NGC 2366 is about the same size as two closer and more familiar dwarf galaxies to the Milky Way; the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds. They lie just 170,000 light-years from Earth. But like the Magellanic Clouds, NGC 2366 lacks the internal structure of galaxies like our home, the Milky Way, and the Andromeda Galaxy.
NGC 2366 is still producing stars. As you pan across the image look for bright blue dots throughout the image. These are giant blue stars many times larger than our Sun. Intense ultraviolet radiation from these new stars excites atoms in the nebulae scattered throughout the image causing them to glow. Zoom into the blue nebula in the upper right hand corner. This star-forming nebula is NGC 2363. This nebula is actually has more of a pinkish tint but is blue because of the green and infrared filters used for this image by the Hubble.