Hubble Interacting Galaxy NGC 17
This galaxy features a single nucleus, containing a blue central disk with delicate fine structure in the outer parts, and tidal tails indicative of two former disk galaxies. At present these galaxies appear to have completed their merger. The remnant shows clear signs that the merger was gas-rich and accompanied by a starburst. NGC 17 is gas-rich and can sustain its strong central starburst and present mild central activity for some time to come. NGC 17 is located about 250 million light-years away in the constellation of Cetus, the Whale.
This image is part of a large collection of 59 images of merging galaxies taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and released on the occasion of its 18th anniversary on 24th April 2008.