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Hubble Space Telescope Spots ‘Local’ IC 4653 Galaxy

Hubble just observed a “neighbor” in space:  The space telescope recently captured an image of  IC 4653, a galaxy located approximately 80 million light-years from our planet.

Even though IC 4653 sounds like it’s far away, NASA says it’s not that distant on a cosmic scale. This galaxy is similar to objects found in the Milky Way. The image above shows IC 4653 set in a background of twinkling stars in space.

IC 4653 is a bustling spot: Swirly arms share what’s happening inside this galaxy. Stars are typically more illuminated and have a rich blue hue when they are younger. The blue patches above show sites where new stars are forming.

According to NASA, analyzing the structures of other galaxies is crucial to understanding the Milky Way and other interstellar objects near Earth. We can’t leave the Milky Way, so comparing the structures of this galaxy with those of nearby galaxies enables us to learn more about star formation and other cosmic activity.

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