ROYAL OBSERVATORY, EDINBURGH / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL OBSERVATORY, EDINBURGH / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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False-colour optical image of part of the Virgo cluster of galaxies. The Virgo cluster is the nearest major cluster of galaxies to our Local Group at a distance of about 65 million light years. Almost 1300 galaxies have been grouped in it, spread across a region 10 million light years wide. The image shows many elliptical and spiral galaxies, but the field is dominated by the giant elliptical galaxies M87 (bottom left), M86 and M84 at centre right. The nuclei of the galaxies are shown in red whereas their outer regions are blue.
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