Yesterday, August 1, NASA posted a stunning image of the Andromeda Galaxy on Instagram. Taken by the Hubble Space Telescope, it is the largest image of our neighboring galaxy. The image has gone viral on the social media platform.
On August 1, NASA posted a stunning image of the Andromeda galaxy on its official Instagram profile. However, it was not a regular image of our neighboring galaxy. Taken by the Hubble Space Telescope, this is the largest-ever taken image of the Andromeda galaxy. The image has now gone viral with more than 1 million likes. NASA has been posting interesting images on its social media accounts for both educational purposes and to spread awareness about space among people. Read on to know more about it.
Posting the awe-inspiring image, NASA wrote, “Seven years ago, @NASAHubble captured its largest-ever image assembled of the Andromeda galaxy in brilliant clarity, showing a 48,000-light-year-long stretch of our galactic neighbor showing over 100 million stars in this sweeping view. Because Andromeda lies 2.5 million light-years away, we can identify thousands of star clusters – a compact group of hundreds or thousands of stars. Our Milky Way galaxy and Andromeda are similar in size and shape, and by studying our sister galaxy, we can learn much about our own.”.
The post has garnered 1,152,815 likes and more than 2000 comments at the time of writing this.
NASA posts the largest-ever image of Andromeda Galaxy
The Andromeda galaxy, also known as Messier 31, M31, or NGC 224, is a barred spiral galaxy with a diameter of about 46.56 kiloparsecs (152,000 lightyears). It is located about 770 kiloparsecs (2.5 million lightyears) away from the Earth. While not much is known about the galaxy in depth due to the large distance, the galaxy is entirely capable of having Earth-like planets that support life. The Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies are expected to collide in around 4–5 billion years and merge into a single giant galaxy.
This is not the only post to go viral on NASA’s Instagram account. Recently the handle posted an image of Pluto with rainbow colors to highlight the complex geography of the dwarf planet which also went viral.