Home » News & Blogs » Hubble Heritage Archive: Sombrero Galaxy
Bookmark and Share
Illuminated Universe

Hubble Heritage Archive: Sombrero Galaxy

9 Aug 2019, 19:00 UTC
Hubble Heritage Archive: Sombrero Galaxy
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

The text and images in this article were originally published on October 2, 2003, and reflect information about M104 available at that time.

HUBBLE MOSAIC OF THE MAJESTIC SOMBRERO GALAXY

NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has trained its razor-sharp eye on one of the universe’s most stately and photogenic galaxies, the Sombrero galaxy, Messier 104 (M104). The galaxy’s hallmark is a brilliant white, bulbous core encircled by the thick dust lanes comprising the spiral structure of the galaxy. As seen from Earth, the galaxy is tilted nearly edge-on. We view it from just six degrees north of its equatorial plane. This brilliant galaxy was named the Sombrero because of its resemblance to the broad rim and high-topped Mexican hat.

At a relatively bright magnitude of +8, M104 is easily seen through small telescopes. The Sombrero lies at the southern edge of the rich Virgo cluster of galaxies and is one of the most massive objects in that group, equivalent to 800 billion suns. The galaxy is 50,000 light-years across and is located 28 million light-years from Earth.

Hubble easily resolves M104’s rich system of globular clusters, estimated to be nearly 2,000 in number — 10 times as many as ...

Latest Vodcast

Latest Podcast

Advertise PTTU

NASA Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

astronomy_pod