Research NewsAstronomy

Hubbub at a Cartwheel's Center

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Science  06 Dec 1996:
Vol. 274, Issue 5293, pp. 1610
DOI: 10.1126/science.274.5293.1610a


Dramatic images from the Hubble Space Telescope reveal the details of a galaxy that was distorted into the shape of a wagon wheel when a smaller galaxy plunged into it. The images show massive balls of gas reeling like comets around the galaxy's center. Presumably formed from the debris of the cataclysm, the megacomets may help scientists better understand the strange physics of galactic collisions.