NASA says NGC 6872 is the largest spiral galaxy ever discovered

Located about 212 million light-years from Earth, the massive spiral galaxy NGC 6872 has been known to astronomers for decades. But it wasn't until a recent survey of nearby star-forming regions that NASA scientists realized just how big it truly is. New data shows that, from tip-to-tip across its two outsized spiral… » 1/11/13 7:20am 1/11/13 7:20am

Brilliant new computer simulation shows how the Milky Way formed after…

As surprising as this may sound, physicists and astronomers aren't entirely sure how spiral galaxies like the Milky Way got their exact shape. Any attempts to generate a spiral galaxy from scratch resulted in a computer simulation that showed a giant ball with too many stars. But a new study to be published in the… » 7/26/12 9:30am 7/26/12 9:30am

Why did these ‘ghost galaxies’ suddenly stop making stars?

According to predictive models, there should be thousands of ancient and tiny ‘dwarf galaxies' in our neighborhood — but to date, astronomers have found but a few. And those discovered contain puzzlingly few stars, giving rise to the name ‘ghost galaxies.' This problem has led to the theory that dwarf galaxies must… » 7/16/12 9:43am 7/16/12 9:43am

Astronomers discover invisible, starless galaxies predicted by theory

When thinking about how galaxies form, scientists have speculated about large masses of gas that are drawn together to form a kind of embryonic proto-galaxy. But because these supposed objects are starless, they would be practically invisible, thus making them impossible to detect — or so it would seem. » 7/12/12 11:20am 7/12/12 11:20am