/ 1 min read

Spiral Galaxy Spans Space

Spiral galaxy surrounded by stars
On this page
Contributors
Share this post

This Jan. 10, 2013, composite image of the giant barred spiral galaxy NGC 6872 combines visible light images from the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope with far-ultraviolet data from NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX) and infrared data acquired by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

This Jan. 10, 2013, composite image of the giant barred spiral galaxy NGC 6872 combines visible light images from the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope with far-ultraviolet data from NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX) and infrared data acquired by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

NGC 6872 is 522,000 light-years across, making it more than five times the size of the Milky Way galaxy; in 2013, astronomers from the United States, Chile, and Brazil found it to be the largest-known spiral galaxy, based on archival data from GALEX.

Image Credit: NASA/ESO/JPL-Caltech/DSS