NGC 4631

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Chandra X-ray
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NGC 4631: A spiral galaxy about 25 million light years from Earth.
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/UMass/D.Wang et al., Optical: NASA/HST/D.Wang et al.)

Caption: Chandra's observations of NGC 4631 reveal a giant halo of hot gas (shown in blue and purple) surrounding this spiral galaxy. The structure across the middle of the image and the extended faint filaments (shown in orange) represent data from the Hubble Space Telescope that reveal giant bursting bubbles created by merging clusters of massive stars. NGC 4631 closely resembles our Milky Way galaxy, and observations of NGC 4631 and similar galaxies provide astronomers with an important tool in the understanding our own galactic environment.

Scale: Image is 2.5 arcmin on a side.

Chandra X-ray Observatory ACIS Image

CXC operated for NASA by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory