Somewhere in a galaxy far, far away, NASA has been busy taking snapshots of, well, galaxies that are far, far away. So, queue up the Interstellar theme and feast your eyes on the latest celestial delights courtesy of the Hubble and James Webb telescopes.
The latest pictures are of the newly named Phantom Galaxy. Also known as M74, the Phantom Galaxy is located around 32 million light-years away in the constellation Pisces, so you know it’s occasionally an emotional mess. And since water signs take up more than half of my astrological chart, I have clearance to make jokes like that.
Anyway, M74 is a particular class of spiral galaxy known as a “grand design spiral,” according to the European Space Agency. That means its spiral arms are prominent and well-defined, unlike other spiral galaxies which are typically ragged and all over the place. In other words, M74 is serving severe intergalactic looks. Slay.
The three newly released images are the result of significant teamwork. Webb grabbed an infrared shot while Hubble’s vision was used to capture an image at ultraviolet and visible wavelengths.
Essentially, astronomers combined data from these two telescopes to capture images that span the entire electromagnetic spectrum. By doing so, astronomers can accurately pinpoint star-forming regions in the galaxies as well as measure the mass and age of star clusters.
Cool stuff indeed. Now go sit back, reflect and listen to “Alien Superstar” for the umpteenth time.
Ready to go stargazing?
Here are all the best stargazing events that you can get out and see this month or you could stay in a stream the northern lights from home. If you’re just getting started, check out our guide to astronomy for beginners or easy stargazing road trips from big US cities.Want more Thrillist? Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, TikTok, and Snapchat.
Jeremy Porr is a News Writer at Thrillist. Follow Jeremy on Instagram.