Hoag’s Object

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Hoag’s Object is a ring galaxy discovered in 1950. This galaxy is named after Arthur Allen Hoag, the astronomer who discovered it. He first identified it as a planetary nebula but later came to a conclusion and called it a ring galaxy on the basis of its shape.

There are approximately eight billion stars in this galaxy. It appears as a perfect circle of young hot blue stars with a much older nucleus which is yellow in color. It still remains a mystery as to how this galaxy formed.

 

Quick Facts: –

  • Galaxies are the largest things in the universe and come in only a few varieties like elliptical, irregular and spiral.
  • Hoag’s Object spans about 100,000 light-years and lies about 600 million light-years away from Earth.
  • This galaxy is located in the constellation Serpens. It is about the size of our galaxy, Milky Way.
  • On the top of the nucleus and slightly to the right, there is another ring galaxy which can be seen through Hoag’s Object.
  • The core of Hoag’s Object has a very low velocity relative to the ring.
  • Earlier, Arthur Hoag stated that this galaxy was a product of gravitational lensing but this idea was discarded later.
  • Noah Brosch suggested that this galaxy might be a product of an extreme bar instability in a barred spiral galaxy.
  • There is little evidence to support this theory so the dispute still remains unsettled on this topic.