Ring Galaxy AM 0644 741 from Hubble

Ring Galaxy AM 0644 741 from Hubble
How could a galaxy become shaped like a ring? The rim of the blue galaxypicturedon the right is an immense ring-like structure 150,000light yearsin diameter composed of newly formed, extremely bright, massive stars. That galaxy,AM 0644-741, is known as aring galaxyand was caused by an immense galaxy collision. Whengalaxies collide, they pass through each other - their individual stars rarely come into contact. Thering-like shape is the result of thegravitational disruptioncaused by an entiresmall intrudergalaxy passing through a large one. When this happens, interstellar gas anddustbecome condensed, causing awave of star formationto move out from the impact point like a ripple across the surface of a pond. The intruder galaxy is just outside of the frame taken by theHubble Space Telescope. Thisfeatured imagewas taken tocommemorate the anniversaryofHubble's launchin 1990.Ring galaxyAM 0644-741 lies about 300 million light years away. Ring0644_hubble_9601

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