ROYAL GREENWICH OBSERVATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL GREENWICH OBSERVATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Spiral galaxy. Optical image of the spiral galaxy NGC 7814. NGC 7814 does not show its spiral arms because it is observed across its galactic plane. This plane may be visualised by a line inclined at 45 degrees arising from the bottom left and pointing to the upper right corner. The thin dark band lying along the galactic plane is a layer of dust and gas which is orbiting around the centre of the galaxy (bright yellow area). NGC 7814 lies about 30 million light years from Earth and contains about one hundred thousand million stars.
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