Image Credit: Hubble, Subaru; Robert Gendler (STScI/NASA/CADC/NRC/CSA)

This exquisite beauty is NGC 2841; a spiral galaxy that lurks more than 46 million light-years from Earth in the constellation of Ursa Major.Its impressive looks are only beaten by its large stature. As it stands, this galaxy is the among the largest ones ever cataloged, with it spanning over 150,000 light-years across (meaning, it’s about 50% larger than our own galaxy, which has a diameter of about 100,000 light-years).

This view of it, a composite of images taken with the Hubble Space Telescope and the 8.2-meter Subaru Telescope, highlights some of the galaxy’s very best features; from its strikingly large, yellow-tinged central core, the dust lanes and the pinkish hydrogen emission regions that pervade the tightly-wound spiral arms, along with pale blue patches of hot, high-mass stars that accompany them.

Instead of being your every-day spiral galaxy, NGC 2841 technically belongs to a class called flocculent spirals. Unlike their counterparts, galaxies in this class tend to feature short, undefined spiral arms, instead of arms that are long and fully fleshed out.

See a larger image here.

Stunning Spiral Galaxies (SLIDESHOW):

 


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