January – The Milky Way’s tidy galactic neighbour

While most galaxies are chock-full of dust, this dwarf galaxy — snapped with the OmegaCAM camera on ESO’s VLT Survey Telescope in Chile — is a veritable clean freak. IC 1613 contains very little interstellar dust, which allows astronomers to explore its contents with great clarity and precision. By studying stars that have variable brightness within IC 1613, astronomers have determined that it lies only 2.3 million light-years away and is part of the Local Group: a collection of more than 50 galaxies that includes our home galaxy, the Milky Way.


ESO. Acknowledgement: VST/OmegaCAM Local Group Survey

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