MEHAU KULYK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MEHAU KULYK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Galaxy formation. Computer artwork of a spiral galaxy forming in the aftermath of the Big Bang, the titanic explosion which created the Universe about 15 billion years ago. Dense gas in the galaxy's core has already condensed under gravit- ational attraction to form stars. Radiation pressure from these new stars is blowing some material away in streams. Around the core are spiral arms (blue) of diffuse gas which is condensing to form stars more slowly than in the core. Galaxy formation is thought to have commenced when the Universe was about 100,000 years old. It is thought that they formed in high-density ripples in the early Universe.
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