Hubble Image Of Giant Elliptical Galaxy Abell 2147

©NASA

Elliptical Galaxy Abell 2147

This new NASA Hubble Space Telescope image spotlights the giant elliptical galaxy, UGC 10143, at the heart of galaxy cluster, Abell 2147, about 486 million light-years away in the head of the serpent, the constellation Serpens.

UGC 10143 is the biggest and brightest member of Abell 2147, which itself may be part of the much larger Hercules Supercluster of galaxies. UGC 10143's bright center, dim extended halo, and lack of spiral arms and star-forming dust lanes distinguish it as an elliptical galaxy. Ellipticals are often near the center of galaxy clusters, suggesting they may form when galaxies merge.

This image of UGC 10143 is part of a Hubble survey of globular star clusters associated with the brightest galaxies in galaxy clusters. Globular star clusters help astronomers trace the origin and evolution of their galactic neighbors. The Hubble survey looked at the distribution, brightness, and metal content of more than 35,000 globular star clusters.

The image uses data from Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys. Any gaps were filled by Hubble's Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 and the Pan-STARRS collaboration. The color blue represents visible blue light, and reddish-orange represents near infrared light.

Image credit: NASA, ESA, and W. Harris (McMaster University); Image processing: G. Kober (NASA Goddard/Catholic University of America)

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