Spiral galaxy with orbiting globular clusters

Spiral galaxy with orbiting globular clusters

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Credit: LYNETTE COOK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Spiral galaxy. Artist's impression of a large, spiral galaxy with small, spherical groups of stars (globular clusters) nearby. Galax- ies are massive collections of stars, gas and dust Spiral galaxies are flattened, disk-like systems composed of a central core surrounded by spiral arms which circularly orbit around the nucleus. The core generally has a much higher density of stars than the arms; the core's stars also tend to be older than those in the arms. Globular clusters follow highly elliptical orbits around the centre of their galaxy. These orbits often do not lie in the plane of the galaxy. The stars in a globular cluster are often as old as the core's.

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Keywords: artwork, asrophysics, astronomy, cosmology, cosmos, galactic, galaxy, globular clust, globular cluster, helix, illustration, outer space, science, space, spiral, spiral galaxy, stars, universe

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