- Special Features
Blogs & Columns
- Fun & Games
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has picked up an image of roughly 100,000 light years away in which it appears a string of pearls are orbiting the two cores of spiral galaxies. The two galaxies reside in a cluster dubbed "J1531+3414" and spans about 330,000 light-years wide. Although it has been known to happen, this is the first recorded sighting of the phenomenon.
The "string of pearls" occurred because internal pressure of a gas cloud is not enough to prevent a collapse of the area containing the matter inside, reports HNGN. This type of physical process is the same that helps water droplets form, instead of having continuous streams of water flow from clouds when it rains.
Scientists are not sure if the star chain formed due to the merging of the two galaxies, or that the cooled gasses came from within the plasma of each galaxy, reports Space.com. Grant Tremblay, the study leader and a member of the European Southern Observatory in Garching, Germany, says that tidal bridges between interacting galaxies are a typical phenomenon, but "this particular supercluster arrangement has never been seen before in giant merging elliptical galaxies."