ROBERT GENDLER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROBERT GENDLER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Barred spiral galaxy (NGC 2903), optical image. This galaxy lies around 25 million light years away in the constellation Leo. It has spiral arms and a central bar, like our own galaxy, the Milky Way. The red areas are regions of star formation. The radiation from hot young stars ionises the surrounding gas and causes it to glow. It is thought that the gravitational effect of the central bar of the galaxy stimulates star formation.
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