M82 (Hubble and Webb)

 M82 (Hubble and Webb)

Starburst galaxy M82 was observed by the Hubble Space Telescope in 2006, which showed the galaxy’s edge-on spiral disk, shredded clouds, and hot hydrogen gas. The James Webb Space Telescope has observed M82’s core, capturing in unprecedented detail the structure of the galactic wind and characterizing individual stars and star clusters.

The Webb image is from the telescope’s NIRCam (Near-Infrared Camera) instrument. The red filaments trace the shape of the cool component of the galactic wind via polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). PAHs are very small dust grains that survive in cooler temperatures but are destroyed in hot conditions. The structure of the emission is similar to that of the ionized gas, suggesting PAHs may be replenished from cooler molecular material as it is ionized.



NASA, ESA, CSA, STScI, Alberto Bolatto (UMD)

About The Object
Object Name M82, NGC 3034
Object Description Starburst Galaxy
R.A. Position 09:55:52.0
Dec. Position 69:40:48.99
Constellation Ursa Major
Distance 12 million light-years (3.7 Megaparsecs)
About The Data
Data Description Left Image: This image was created from HST data from proposal M. Mountain (STScI), J. Gallagher (University of Wisconsin-Madison), P. Puxley (NSF), K. Noll, H. Bond, C. Christian, L. Frattare, F. Hamilton, Z. Levay, M. Mutchler, W. Januszewski, and T. Royle (Hubble Heritage Team/STScI/AURA) Right Image: This image was created with Webb data from proposal: (M. Marin). Image processing: Alyssa Pagan (STScI).
Exposure Dates 27-29 March 2006, 5 Janurary 2024
Filters HST> F435W, F555W, F658N, F814W JWST> F164N, F250W, F335M
About The Image
Color Info Left Image: This image is a composite of many separate exposures made by the ACS instrument on the Hubble Space Telescope using several different filters. Three filters sample broad wavelength ranges, one isolates the light of hydrogen. The color results from assigning different hues (colors) to each monochromatic image. In this case, the assigned colors are: Blue: F435W, Green: F555W, Red-orange: F658N Red: F814W Right Image: This image is a composite of separate exposures acquired by the James Webb Space Telescope using the NIRCam instrument. Several filters were used to sample varying wavelength ranges. The color results from assigning different hues (colors) to each monochromatic (grayscale) image associated with an individual filter. In this case, the assigned colors are:  Blue: F164N, Green: F250W, Red: F335M
Compass Image Left: Messier 82 as imaged by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Hour-glass-shaped red plumes of gas are shooting outward from above and below a bright blue, disk-shaped center of a galaxy. This galaxy is surrounded by many white stars and set against the black background of space. A small square highlights the section that the image on the right shows in greater detail. White text at bottom reads "Hubble." Right: A section of Messier 82 as imaged by NASA's James Webb Space Telescope. An edge-on spiral starburst galaxy with a bright white, glowing core set against the black background of space. A white band of the edge-on disk extends from lower left to upper right. Dark brown tendrils of dust are scattered thinly along this band. Many white points in various sizes – stars or star clusters – are scattered throughout the image, but are most heavily concentrated toward the center. Many clumpy, red filaments extend vertically above and below the galaxy’s plane. White text at bottom reads "Webb."
About The Object
Object Name A name or catalog number that astronomers use to identify an astronomical object.
Object Description The type of astronomical object.
R.A. Position Right ascension – analogous to longitude – is one component of an object's position.
Dec. Position Declination – analogous to latitude – is one component of an object's position.
Constellation One of 88 recognized regions of the celestial sphere in which the object appears.
Distance The physical distance from Earth to the astronomical object. Distances within our solar system are usually measured in Astronomical Units (AU). Distances between stars are usually measured in light-years. Interstellar distances can also be measured in parsecs.
Dimensions The physical size of the object or the apparent angle it subtends on the sky.
About The Data
Data Description
  • Proposal: A description of the observations, their scientific justification, and the links to the data available in the science archive.
  • Science Team: The astronomers who planned the observations and analyzed the data. "PI" refers to the Principal Investigator.
Instrument The science instrument used to produce the data.
Exposure Dates The date(s) that the telescope made its observations and the total exposure time.
Filters The camera filters that were used in the science observations.
About The Image
Image Credit The primary individuals and institutions responsible for the content.
Publication Date The date and time the release content became public.
Color Info A brief description of the methods used to convert telescope data into the color image being presented.
Orientation The rotation of the image on the sky with respect to the north pole of the celestial sphere.