An explosive phoenix

This image shows a dwarf galaxy in the southern constellation of Phoenix named, for obvious reasons, the Phoenix Dwarf.

The Phoenix Dwarf is unique in that it cannot be classified according to the usual scheme for dwarf galaxies; while its shape would label it as a spheroidal dwarf galaxy — which do not contain enough gas to form new stars — studies have shown the galaxy to have an associated cloud of gas nearby, hinting at recent star formation, and a population of young stars.

The gas cloud does not lie within the galaxy itself, but is still gravitationally bound to it — meaning that it will eventually fall back into the galaxy over time. Since the cloud is close by, it’s likely that the process that flung it outwards it is still ongoing. After studying the shape of the gas cloud, astronomers suspect the most likely cause of the ejection to be supernova explosions within the galaxy.

The data to create this image was selected from the ESO archive as part of the Hidden Treasure competition.

Credit:

ESO

About the Image

Id:potw1838a
Type:Observation
Release date:17 September 2018, 06:00
Size:5773 x 3995 px

About the Object

Name:Phoenix Dwarf
Type:Local Universe : Galaxy : Size : Dwarf
Constellation:Phoenix
Category:Galaxies

Image Formats

Large JPEG
9.1 MB
Screensize JPEG
317.7 KB

Zoomable


Wallpapers

1024x768
369.7 KB
1280x1024
622.7 KB
1600x1200
908.5 KB
1920x1200
1.1 MB
2048x1536
1.5 MB

Coordinates

Position (RA):1 51 6.35
Position (Dec):-44° 26' 32.60"
Field of view:12.14 x 8.40 arcminutes
Orientation:North is 90.1° right of vertical

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
B
440 nmVery Large Telescope
FORS2
Optical
V
557 nmVery Large Telescope
FORS2

 

Also see our