The Hubble Space Telescope captured the traffic of stars and bright star-forming regions in a galaxy in the direction of the constellation Ursa Major.This image from the Hubble Space Telescope shows the large design spiral galaxy NGC 3631, located 53 million light-years from Earth in the direction of the constellation Ursa Major. The galaxy's arms appear to wrap around and inside the galaxy's core.
In this "Grand Design Spiral Galaxy" there are two main spiral arms that start near the center and each Smaller arms branch with lower levels of brightness. Large design spiral galaxies have perfectly clear and large spiral arms. Careful examination of the large helical arms of NGC 3631 reveals dark dust lines and bright areas of star formation along the inside of the helical arms.
Position of the galaxy NGC 3631 in the constellation Ursa
Major (Ursa Major)
Credit: The Sky Live
" H2 "regions ( HII) Brilliant is present in all the arms of this galaxy. H2 regions are large, low-density clouds and ionized gases in which stars are born. NGC 3631 has a medium to high stellar velocity, and the galaxy has an estimated star birth rate of 4.6 times the mass of the Sun per year. Like cars traveling on highways, slower moving material creates a bottleneck in the helical disk, causing stellar gas and dust to accumulate along the inside of the helical arms. This material traffic can become so dense that it gravitates inward and forms new stars. These areas are shown in light blue-white in the image.
Hubble's new view of the galaxy NGC 3631
with a 17-degree tilt of the galaxy is almost visible from the front. To capture this new image, data collected by the Hubble 3's wide-field camera and an advanced camera were used for mapping. Blue represents the visible wavelengths of blue light and orange represents the infrared spectrum.
Photos: NGC 6331 Spiral galaxy
Credit: NASA, ESA, A. Filippenko (University of California - Berkeley), and D. Sand (University of Arizona); Image Processing: G. Kober (NASA Goddard/Catholic University of America)
Sources: NASA, (1994) The Carnegie Atlas of Galaxies, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 437