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News Release Archive:

News Release 253 of 965

February 10, 2009 09:00 AM (EST)

News Release Number: STScI-2009-07

NASA's Great Observatories Celebrate the International Year of Astronomy with a National Unveiling of Spectacular Images

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Image: Hubble Image of M101

Hubble Image of M101

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ABOUT THIS IMAGE:

Messier 101 has a pancake-like shape that we view face-on. This perspective shows off the spiral structure that gives it the nickname the Pinwheel Galaxy. In this Hubble image, taken in visible light, the bright blue clumps are regions where new stars have formed. The yellowish core consists mainly of old stars. The dark brown dust lanes are colder and denser regions where interstellar clouds may collapse to form new stars. All of these features are shaped into a beautiful spiral pattern by a combination of gravity and rotation. Astronomers use visible light to study where and how stars form in spiral galaxies.

Object Names: M101, NGC 4547, The Pinwheel Galaxy

Image Type: Astronomical

Credit: NASA, ESA, K. Kuntz (JHU), F. Bresolin (University of Hawaii), J. Trauger (Jet Propulsion Lab), J. Mould (NOAO), Y.-H. Chu (University of Illinois, Urbana), and STScI

NEWS RELEASE IMAGES

The above image is part of a montage:

Montage Image: Spiral Galaxy M101 - NASA's Great Observatories Image Type: Astronomical/Annotated Spiral Galaxy M101 - NASA's Great ObservatoriesPRC2009-07b Spitzer Image of M101 Image Type: Astronomical Spitzer Image of M101 Chandra Image of M101 Image Type: Astronomical Chandra Image of M101

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