New images jointly published by NASA and the European Space Agency show the inner workings of Phantom Galaxy, M74. Photo by NASA
Aug. 30 (UPI) -- New images jointly published by NASA and the European Space Agency show the inner workings of Phantom Galaxy, M74.
The images were published on Monday and produced using both the James Webb Space Telescope and Hubble Space Telescope to "complement each other to provide a comprehensive view of the galaxy," the agencies said in a statement.
The Phantom Galaxy, located in the constellation Pisces, is roughly 32 million light-years away from Earth and is nearly a direct line -- or face-on -- to Earth.
The galaxy's proximity and placement along with its well-defined spiral arms, make it a favorite target for astronomers studying galactic spirals.
The M74 Phantom is a type of spiral galaxy known as a grand design spiral, meaning its spiral arms are prominent and well-defined, which differs greatly from the often ragged and ragged structure seen in some spiral galaxies.
"Webb's sharp vision has revealed delicate filaments of gas and dust in the grandiose spiral arms of M74, which wind outwards from the centre of the image," ESA researchers said in a press release.
"A lack of gas in the nuclear region also provides an unobscured view of the nuclear star cluster at the galaxy's center," the researchers said.
The addition of the Webb telescope's "crystal-clear" observations using its Mid-InfraRed Instrument to existing data from the Hubble "will allow astronomers to pinpoint star-forming regions in the galaxies, accurately measure the masses and ages of star clusters, and gain insights into the nature of the small grains of dust drifting in interstellar space."
NASA's James Webb Space Telescope captures a fiery hourglass of light. This cloud of dust and gas is illuminated by light from a protostar, a star in the earliest stages of formation. Photo courtesy of NASA