A curled viper

Eso_potw2223a_1024

eso_potw2223a June 6th, 2022

Credit: ESO/ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)/PHANGS

Resembling a curled sleeping snake, this picture shows NGC 1087. This spiral galaxy, located approximately 80 million light-years from Earth in the constellation of Cetus, is captured here by a combination of observations conducted at different wavelengths  –– or colours –– of light.  But no need to worry, NGC 1087 will not poison you! The apparent menacing red glow actually corresponds to clouds of cold molecular gas, the raw material out of which stars form. Astronomers are able to image these clouds thanks to the Chile-based Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), in which ESO is a partner. The bluish regions in the background reveal the pattern of older, already formed stars, imaged by the Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) on ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) also in Chile.  The images were taken as part of the Physics at High Angular resolution in Nearby GalaxieS (PHANGS) project. The team is making high-resolution observations of nearby galaxies with telescopes operating across a wide range of wavelengths. Different wavelengths tell us about the physical properties of stars, gas and dust within galaxies, and by comparing them astronomers are able to study what activates, boosts or hinders the birth of new stars. 

Provider: European Southern Observatory

Image Source: https://www.eso.org/public/images/potw2223a/

Curator: European Southern Observatory, Garching bei München, None, Germany

Image Use Policy: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
NGC 1087
Subject - Local Universe
Galaxy > Type > Spiral
Eso_potw2223a_128
 

Position Details

Position (ICRS)
RA = 2h 46m 25.2s
DEC = 0° 29’ 54.4”
Orientation
North is 90.0° CCW
Field of View
2.9 x 2.0 arcminutes
Constellation
Cetus

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Blue VLT (MUSE) Optical (G) 475.0 nm
Green VLT (MUSE) Optical (R) 630.0 nm
Red VLT (MUSE) Optical (I) 775.0 nm
Red ALMA (Band 6) Millimeter (CO [2–1]) 1.2 mm
Spectrum_ir1
Blue
Green
Red
Red
Eso_potw2223a_1280
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ID
potw2223a
Subject Category
C.5.1.1  
Subject Name
NGC 1087
Credits
ESO/ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)/PHANGS
Release Date
2022-06-06T06:00:00
Lightyears
Redshift
Reference Url
https://www.eso.org/public/images/potw2223a/
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Distance Notes
Facility
Very Large Telescope, Very Large Telescope, Very Large Telescope, Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array
Instrument
MUSE, MUSE, MUSE, Band 6
Color Assignment
Blue, Green, Red, Red
Band
Optical, Optical, Optical, Millimeter
Bandpass
G, R, I, CO [2–1]
Central Wavelength
475, 630, 775, 1200000
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
None, None, None, None
Notes
Coordinate Frame
ICRS
Equinox
J2000
Reference Value
41.6048460267, -0.498453824949
Reference Dimension
861.0, 595.0
Reference Pixel
430.5, 297.5
Scale
-5.5614364783e-05, 5.5614364783e-05
Rotation
89.97999999999989
Coordinate System Projection:
TAN
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
European Southern Observatory
URL
https://www.eso.org
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 2
City
Garching bei München
State/Province
None
Postal Code
D-85748
Country
Germany
Rights
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
Publisher
European Southern Observatory
Publisher ID
eso
Resource ID
potw2223a
Metadata Date
2021-06-09T15:23:03+02:00
Metadata Version
1.1
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

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There is no distance meta data in this image.