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Fraser
2005-Mar-03, 06:36 PM
SUMMARY: The Hubble Space Telescope has taken a photograph of irregular galaxy NGC 1427A on a death plunge into the Fornax cluster of galaxies. NGC 1427A has the beautiful blue colour of intense star formation, because gravitation interaction with the cluster has already collapsed much of its gas. Astronomers think that the galaxy will be completely ripped apart within a billion years, and its stars assimilated into other galaxies in the cluster.

View full article (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/galaxy_cosmic_collision.html)

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antoniseb
2005-Mar-03, 08:32 PM
This is an interesting observation showing yet another part of the lifecycle of galaxies. Here we are seeing what appears to be a small spiral [perhaps like the LMC] about to be turned into one or more small ellipticals. It is interesting that it ends its star building life with one huge burst of star forming activity. This is consistent with our observations of ellipticals which seem to show that a large fraction of their youngest stars were all formed at the same time.

buzzlightbeer
2005-Mar-03, 11:27 PM
hope there are no planets with life in this galaxy :(

wstevenbrown
2005-Mar-05, 11:45 AM
This is consistent with our observations of ellipticals which seem to show that a large fraction of their youngest stars were all formed at the same time.

This tickles my funnybone, Antoniseb. Back in the '60's, I was given a failing grade in an undergraduate Astronomy course for suggesting an accretion model of elliptical formation. It was very well known at that time that galaxies formed exactly as we see them, and only rarely collide. Gradualism and isotropy were... very fashionable. ;) S

antoniseb
2005-Mar-05, 11:56 AM
Originally posted by wstevenbrown@Mar 5 2005, 11:45 AM
Back in the '60's, I was given a failing grade in an undergraduate Astronomy course for suggesting an accretion model of elliptical formation.
Things change. I suspect that in 1920 a failing grade might have been achieved by saying the universe had a start date, and was expanding, or by suggesting that there were small objects millions of times more massive than the sun shooting out beams of radiation from the centers of galaxies, or that five sixths of the mass of our galaxy might be in the form non-interactive particles remnant from the first minutes of the universe, or that the sun was made mostly of Hydrogen and Helium and got its power from combining one into the other, or that there was a nearly undetectable particle called the neutrino which would turn into one of the most important tools for understanding the cosmos.

Or not. It depends on how open minded your instructor was.

dave_f
2005-Mar-05, 06:04 PM
Originally posted by buzzlightbeer@Mar 3 2005, 06:27 PM
hope there are no planets with life in this galaxy :(
Well, if there is, and if they survive the next billion years, that night sky of theirs is gonna look awfully dark. Of course, being close to a supercluster might afford them a unimaginably beautiful night sky view of all those huge galaxies.