Saturday, March 5, 2011

Star Streams, Magstreams and Ringscapers

I have inverted the picture from Universe Today's most recent  "Where in the Universe?" contest, to give the structures more of a "skyline" feel. It shows 1.6 mile high "Ringscapers" rising from the B-ring of Saturn. I have no idea how they form or even if they're static or dynamic. I do know the rings are normally only 30 feet think.

Stellar streams in the Milky Way, discovered in 2007

Explanation: Grand tidal streams of stars seem to surround galaxy NGC 5907. The arcing structures form tenuous loops extending more than 150,000 light-years from the narrow, edge-on spiral, also known as the Splinter or Knife Edge Galaxy. Recorded only in very deep exposures, the streams likely represent the ghostly trail of a dwarf galaxy -- debris left along the orbit of a smaller satellite galaxy that was gradually torn apart and merged with NGC 5907 over four billion years ago. Ultimately this remarkable discovery image, from a small robotic observatory in New Mexico, supports the cosmological scenario in which large spiral galaxies, including our own Milky Way, were formed by the accretion of smaller ones. NGC 5907 lies about 40 million light-years distant in the northern constellation Draco.
For more on star streams, click here.

This is a picture of our Milky Way, with the false pink image showing the "magstream" that trails from and is a bit ahead of the LMC and SMC (the large and small Magellenic clouds)

That pic is from Universe Today and you can read more about it by clicking here.

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