Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2023 November 2
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available.

The Fornax Cluster of Galaxies
Image Credit & Copyright: Marcelo Rivera

Explanation: Named for the southern constellation toward which most of its galaxies can be found, the Fornax Cluster is one of the closest clusters of galaxies. About 62 million light-years away, it's over 20 times more distant than our neighboring Andromeda Galaxy, but only about 10 percent farther along than the better known and more populated Virgo Galaxy Cluster. Seen across this three degree wide field-of-view, almost every yellowish splotch on the image is an elliptical galaxy in the Fornax cluster. Elliptical galaxies NGC 1399 and NGC 1404 are the dominant, bright cluster members toward the bottom center. A standout, large barred spiral galaxy, NGC 1365, is visible on the upper right as a prominent Fornax cluster member.

Tomorrow's picture: opposite the Sun

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