The Hubble Space Telescope has recently captured images of a celestial spectacle where star formation is actively taking place within a pair of merging galaxies. These galaxies, identified as UGC 05028 and UGC 05029 collectively referred to as Arp 300, are currently undergoing a merging process.
Termed as interacting or colliding galaxies, the smaller entity UGC 05028 has experienced gravitational forces from its larger companion, UGC 05029 resulting in a captivating interplay of cosmic forces as described by NASA.
Because of its gravitational interaction with the bigger galaxy, UGC 05028 looks a bit lopsided and irregular. This detail is not easy to see with regular telescopes on Earth, but the Hubble Space Telescope’s latest image makes it stand out clearly, according to officials.
From Hubble’s viewpoint both galaxies look straight at us, showing off their bright centers and spiral arms in the new photo. When a spiral galaxy faces us it looks like a round disk, but from the side, it appears squished and oval-shaped
The fact that these are so huge and so far apart, yet can interact with each other is insane
— A. G. Chronos (@realagchronos) January 23, 2024
UGC 05028, one of the galaxies, has a bright spot to the southeast of its core, possibly from an ongoing galactic merger. Once that’s done, scientists predict UGC 05028 will absorb the other galaxy’s remains, forming a central bulge like UGC 05029 and sparking new star creation.
The speedy birth of stars is evident in UGC 05029, triggered by the interaction between the merging galaxies. Hot, blue giant stars populate UGC 05029’s arms closest to its companion, UGC 05028.
Hubble zoomed in on Arp 300 to unravel the relationship between UGC 05028 and UGC 05029’s features and their star-forming dynamics.