The Hubble Space Telescope has been responsible for some pretty spectacular photos since it was launched into space 25 years ago, but a new image (above) of a celestial object astronomers call NGC 3597 is definitely one of its standouts.
NGC 3597 is essentially a cosmic mash-up of two "good-sized" galaxies that have collided and are on their way to becoming a giant elliptical galaxy, according to NASA. The object lies about 150 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Crater, aka The Cup.
The collisions of two sizable galaxies typically takes a few hundred million years, said Dr. Meg Urry, director of the Yale Center for Astronomy & Astrophysics.
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