The Spitzer Space Observatory, sent into space as part of the NASA mission back in 2003, during its work discovered many unusual objects. One of them was the galaxy, whose appearance surprisingly resembles the exotic weapons of the heroes of the Star Wars movie saga.
The long red beam in the center of the image is the galaxy NGC 5866, located 44 million light-years from Earth. The distinct edges of the image indicate that there is a very dense ring of cosmic dust around the galaxy. It absorbs the light of stars, and then reflects it, including in the infrared range in which the picture was taken.
Similar structures usually appear in the early stages of galaxy fusion, but in this case, there are no traces of ring deformation that usually appear in such periods. As a rule, in such “photographs” the galaxies resemble formations with spiral arms or shapeless nebulae, but in this case, scientists managed to remove only the flat “edge” of NGC 5866. Scientists cannot yet explain the unusual structure of space formation - the “uncomfortable” position of the galaxy in space complicates its study.
Spitzer took this shot during a cold mission that ended in 2009. Colors mark the light emitted in the infrared range with different wavelengths. Blue - for light with a wavelength of 3.6 microns, green - 4.5 microns, red - 8 microns. A blue halo around a dust disk is emitted by stars, which make up most of the mass of the galaxy.