JeffSay…

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When worlds collide? Try galaxies.

Think of it: A massive collection of gas, dust, stars and planets traveling at over 1,000,000 miles per hour and slamming into another massive collection of gas, dust, stars and planets.

Quite amazing.

Stephen’s Quintet is a cluster of five galaxies located about 300 million light-years away in the constellation Pegasus.

But it wasn’t until they used Spitzer’s Infrared Spectrograph on the galaxy cluster that they could make out the details of what was happening.

They discovered that one of the galaxies, called NGC7318b, is currently falling toward three of the others at a very high speed and generating a giant shock wave, or “bow shock,” in front of it. A bow shock is akin to the ripple raised by a boat’s bow as it moves through the water.

NGC7318b is estimated to be moving at more than 540 miles per second (873 kms) and generating a colossal shockwave larger than our own Milky Way Galaxy.

What a shock! Galaxies caught colliding | USATODAY.com

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Written by Jeff

Tuesday, March 7, 2006 at 7:34 pm

Posted in Science & Space

One Response

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  1. The thing I have to say about that is…

    ….that I wanted to be the first to comment.

    :[

    adb

    Wednesday, March 8, 2006 at 1:19 pm


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