The image shows galaxy NGC 3718, which is said to be a “highly disturbed spiral,” according to NASA officials. What this means is a disrupted formation caused by the galactic interaction with another galaxy, NGC 3729. As a result, it formed an S-shaped warp.
Dusty and Twisty
It shows a twisting dust lane in detail as it moves through the galaxy’s core. The image was captured while the Hubble was looking into the galaxy’s nucleus. However, it was challenging to see because of the massive amount of dust caused by the galactic interaction.
Still, it can be seen with the use of infrared light that can pass through dusty regions. Some of the features that were caused by the interaction are the line of reddish star formation that extends toward the 9 o’clock position, along with the dark dust tendril at the 7 o’clock position.
Furthermore, the study aims to learn how supermassive black hole masses are related to the galactic bulges around the center and the star formation that takes place throughout a galaxy.
The Support of the James Webb Space Telescope
On the other hand, the agency’s James Webb Space Telescope will support the Hubble by looking into the galaxies that are close to the start of the universe, which will start work this summer.
Another part of the Webb research will also be about the galactic variety, mergers and collisions, and the relationships with supermassive black holes.
A Globular Cluster
The Hubble Telescope also saw a globular cluster, Ruprecht 106, that shows that these globular clusters also have groups of stars that carry distinct chemical compositions that were left by a group of stars with different ages or compositions from the rest of the cluster.
It was able to capture a star-studded image through the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS), which is a third-gen instrument that was a replacement for the original Faint Object Camera that was used in 2002.
Ruprecht 106 is around 69,100 light-years away from the Earth in the Centaurus constellation.
The ACS also helped map dark matter distribution, detecting the most distant objects in the universe. It also searched for huge exoplanets and studied the galaxy cluster’s evolution.
The Hubble has captured plenty of images of spiral galaxies, like NGC 3344. However, the grand spirals were formed over billions of years through various processes, while giant elliptical galaxies are known to be formed by similar-sized galaxies colliding, disrupting each other, and finally merging.