Image of galaxy cluster 800 million light years away from Earth captured by Astrosat

Image of galaxy cluster 800 million light years away from Earth captured by Astrosat
Highlights

India’s first dedicated multi-wavelength space observatory, Astrosat has captured an image of a special galaxy cluster, named Abell 2256 which is more than 800 million light-years away from Earth.

India’s first dedicated multi-wavelength space observatory, Astrosat has captured an image of a special galaxy cluster, named Abell 2256 which is more than 800 million light-years away from Earth.

Made of three separate clusters of galaxies which are merging with one another to eventually form a single massive cluster in the future, the galaxy cluster contains more than 500 galaxies and is 100 times larger and more than 1,500 times massive as our own galaxy.

As per the details and the ultraviolet view of the object, shared by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), this is by far the most distant Astrosat Picture of the Month (APOM).

Astronomers zoomed in six of these galaxies to capture ultraviolet images with the help of the UltraViolet Imaging Telescope (UVIT), one of the five instruments onboard Astrosat.

Elaborating further, the astronomers said that many spiral galaxies transform slowly into lenticular and elliptical galaxies in the galaxy clusters. While spiral galaxies are bluer in colour and are forming stars constantly, elliptical and lenticular galaxies, are red in colour and have mainly old stars in them.

Astronomers believe that Abell 2256 is one such galaxy cluster where many galaxies are going through this metamorphosis. They are investigating the nature of individual galaxies in Abell 2256 and hope to comprehend as to how these galaxies transform into lenticular and elliptical galaxies in the future.

Previously, Astrosat captured images of individual galaxies, a lone galaxy falling into a cluster of other galaxies and two galaxies merging with each other.

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