Hubble photographed the intergalactic bridge

The Hubble Space Telescope photographed a pair of galaxies that are part of the cluster known as Arp 248. They are connected by a tidal tail, which plays the role of an intergalactic bridge.

Galaxies Arp 248. Source: ESA/Hubble & NASA, Dark Energy Survey/DOE/FNAL/DECam/CTIO/NOIRLab/NSF/AURA, J. Dalcanton

Arp 248 is a closely related group of three galaxies (it is also called the Wild’s Triplet). It is located 200 million light-years away from the Milky Way in the direction of the constellation Virgo.

In the Hubble image, two of the triplet’s three galaxies can be seen. They are connected by a stream consisting of stars, gas and dust. This is a tidal tail, which was formed as a result of the gravitational interaction of the participants of the triplet with each other. The third, smaller galaxy in the Hubble image is a more distant background object unrelated to Arp 248.

The Arp 248 image was taken as part of a project to study unusual galaxies. In the future, the most interesting objects will become the target for observations of the James Webb Space Telescope.

Earlier we talked about how James Webb took a frightening picture of the Pillars of Creation.

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