The magnificent spiral galaxy NGC 2276 appears to be like a bit lopsided on this Hubble House Telescope snapshot. A shiny hub of older yellowish stars usually lies instantly within the heart of most spiral galaxies. However the bulge in NGC 2276 appears to be like offset to the higher left.
In actuality, a neighboring galaxy to the precise of NGC 2276 (NGC 2300, not seen right here) is gravitationally tugging on its disk of blue stars, pulling the celebrities on one aspect of the galaxy outward to distort the galaxy’s regular fried-egg look.
This kind of “tug-of-war” between galaxies that move shut sufficient to really feel one another’s gravitational pull isn’t unusual within the universe. However, like snowflakes, no two shut encounters look precisely alike.
As well as, new child and short-lived large stars type a shiny, blue arm alongside the higher left fringe of NGC 2276. They hint out a lane of intense star formation. This may increasingly have been triggered by a previous collision with a dwarf galaxy. It may be because of NGC 2276 plowing into the superheated fuel that lies amongst galaxies in galaxy clusters. This may compress the fuel to precipitate into stars, and set off a firestorm of starbirth.
The spiral galaxy lies 120 million light-years away, within the northern constellation Cepheus.