The Hubble Space Telescope’s Finest Photos- page 6 | Science | Smithsonian
(Courtesy of NASA)

The Hubble Space Telescope’s Finest Photos

Now that the telescope has received its final upgrades, we look back on Hubble's most memorable images from space

When Galaxies Collide - July 9, 2001

Hoags Object galaxy
(Courtesy of NASA)

Hubble’s face-on view of this unusual galaxy, known as Hoag’s Object after Arthur Allen Hoag, who discovered it in 1950, shows its nearly perfect ring of hot, massive, blue stars surrounding a nucleus of older, yellow stars. Ring-shaped galaxies can form either through a collision with another galaxy or when a second galaxy speeds through the first, leaving parts of itself behind. In Hoag's Object, there is evidence that the blue ring may be the shredded remains of a galaxy that passed nearby. Astronomers estimate that the encounter occurred 2 billion to 3 billion years ago.

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