Starburst in NGC 1313 - A Strange Barred Spiral Galaxy
Starburst in NGC 1313
This is an image of galaxy NGC 1313, taken with the FORS instrument at the ESO’s Very Large Telescope. It’s classified as a starburst galaxy, because of the dense regions of furious star formation. NGC 1313 is relatively close to the Milky Way, located only 15 million light-years away. To say it’s forming many new stars is an understatement; NGC 1313 has a rate of star formation 1000x faster than the Milky Way. Galaxies like this usually went through a recent collision with another galaxy, but astronomers can’t find the culprit anywhere near.
The captivating appearance of this image of the starburst galaxy NGC 1313, taken with the FORS instrument at ESO’s Very Large Telescope, belies its inner turmoil. The dense clustering of bright stars and gas in its arms, a sign of an ongoing boom of star births, shows a mere glimpse of the rough times it has seen. Probing ever deeper into the heart of the galaxy, astronomers have revealed many enigmas that continue to defy our understanding.