NGC 1275

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Hubble probed 230 million light years deep into the constellation Perseus to snap this visible light photo of the brilliant and spectacularly energetic constellation NGC 1275, surrounded by vast filaments of hydrogen gas, some as long as 20,000 light years, being sucked into the irresistible gravitational force of the black hole at the center of the galaxy at a rate of 3000 kilometers per second – over 6 million miles per hour.


Entire galaxies are being sucked inexorably toward the black hole, one appearing as a blurry bright spot in the lower right of the photo. The objects that look more like stars are in fact stars in our own Milky Way galaxy, thousands of times closer.


The darker material in front of the dazzling core appears to belong to another galaxy that has spiraled close enough to NGC1275 to be absorbing some of its vast energy and undergoing momentous star formation even as it plummets towards oblivion.


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