This image from the James Webb Space Telescope shows the core of M74, also known as the Phantom Galaxy. Webb’s sharp vision revealed tiny filaments of gas and dust in a large spiral arm protruding from the center of this image. The lack of gas in the nuclear region also provides an unobtrusive view of the nuclear star cluster at the galactic center. Credits: ESA/Webb, NASA, CSA, J. Lee, and the PHANGS-JWST team

Stunning new images of the stunning Phantom Galaxy, M74, show the power of space observatories working together at multiple wavelengths. In this case, the data from[{” attribute=””>James Webb Space Telescope and the Hubble Space Telescope complement each other to provide a comprehensive view of the galaxy.

The Phantom Galaxy is located approximately 32 million light-years away from Earth in the constellation Pisces. It lies almost face-on to Earth. This, coupled with its well-defined spiral arms, makes it a favorite target for astronomers studying the origin and structure of galactic spirals.

 

New images of the Phantom Galaxy, M74, show the power of space observatories working together at various wavelengths. This video includes the Hubble Space Telescope’s view of the galaxy, showing older, redder stars toward the center, to smaller and bluer stars in its spiral arms, and to the most active star formation in the bubbles. red in the H II region. The James Webb Space Telescope image is very different, instead highlighting clumps of gas and dust in the galaxy’s arms, and dense clusters of stars at its core. This composite image of M74 combines the two for a truly unique look at this “big design” spiral galaxy.

M74 is a special class of spiral galaxies known as “large design spirals”. This means the spiral arms are prominent and well defined, unlike the rough, uneven structures seen in some spiral galaxies.

Webb’s sharp vision revealed tiny filaments of gas and dust in the large spiral arms of M74, protruding from the center of the image. The lack of gas in the nuclear region also provides an unobtrusive view of the nuclear star cluster at the galactic center.

M74 shines fully in this optical/mid-infrared composite image, which includes data from the Hubble Space Telescope and the James Webb Space Telescope.
This new image has incredible depth thanks to the Hubble Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) and the Web’s powerful Mid-Infrared (MIRI) instrument that captures a wide range of wavelengths. The red color indicates dust accumulating in the galaxy’s arms, and the bright orange is the hotter dust region. Young stars across the nuclear arms and core are selected in blue. Heavier, older stars appear towards the center of the galaxy in cyan and green, revealing the eerie glow of the ghost galaxy’s core. Star-forming bubbles also appear in pink on the arms. It’s rare to see the various features of a galaxy in one photo.
Scientists collect data from telescopes that operate across the electromagnetic spectrum to truly understand astronomical objects. In this way, data from Hubble and Webb complement each other to provide a comprehensive view of the extraordinary galaxy M74.
Credits: ESA/Webb, NASA, CSA, J. Lee, and the PHANGS-JWST team; ESA/Hubble & NASA, R. Chandar Acknowledgments: J. Schmidt

Webb looked at M74 using the Medium Infrared Instrument (MIRI) to learn more about the early stages of star formation in the local universe. These observations are part of a larger effort to map the 19 closest star-forming galaxies in the infrared by the PHANGS International Collaboration. These galaxies have been observed using the Hubble Space Telescope and ground-based observatories.

Adding observations of the crystal-clear web at longer wavelengths will allow astronomers to determine star-forming regions in galaxies, precisely measure the mass and age of star clusters, and gain insight into the nature of tiny dust grains drifting in interstellar space.

This image from the James Webb Space Telescope shows the core of M74, also known as the Phantom Galaxy. Webb’s sharp vision revealed tiny filaments of gas and dust in a large spiral arm protruding from the center of this image. The lack of gas in the nuclear region also provides an unobtrusive view of the nuclear star cluster at the galactic center. M74 is a special class of spiral galaxies known as “large design spirals”, which means that its spiral arms are prominent and well-defined, unlike the rough, uneven structures seen in some spiral galaxies.

The Hubble record at M74 It reveals a region of very bright star formation known as the HII region. Hubble’s sharp vision at visible and ultraviolet wavelengths complements Webb’s unmatched sensitivity at infrared wavelengths, as does observations from ground-based radio telescopes such as the Atacama Millimeter/Large Meter Matrix, ALMA.

By integrating data from telescopes operating across the Electromagnetic Field. In fact, scientists can gain more insight into astronomical objects than using a single observatory – even if they are as powerful as a net!

New images of the Phantom Galaxy, M74, show the power of space observatories working together at various wavelengths.
On the left, the Hubble Space Telescope’s view of the galaxy ranges from an older, redder star toward the center, to a smaller, bluer star in its spiral arms, to the most active star formation in the red bubble region H II. On the right, the James Webb Space Telescope image is very different, highlighting instead the clumps of gas and dust in the galaxy’s arms, and the dense clusters of stars at its core. The center merge image combines the two for a truly unique look at this “big design” spiral galaxy.
Credits: ESA/Webb, NASA, CSA, J. Lee, and the PHANGS-JWST team; ESA/Hubble & NASA, R. Chandar Acknowledgments: J. Schmidt

About the Web

The James Webb Space Telescope is the world’s first space science observatory. The web will Solve puzzles in our solar system Look beyond the distant worlds around other stars, and explore the mysterious structure and origin of our universe and our place in it. Webb is an international program led by[{” attribute=””>NASA with its partners, ESA and the Canadian Space Agency. The major contributions of ESA to the mission are: the NIRSpec instrument; the MIRI instrument optical bench assembly; the provision of the launch services; and personnel to support mission operations. In return for these contributions, European scientists will get a minimum share of 15% of the total observing time, like for the Hubble Space Telescope.

 

M74 shines fully in this optical/mid-infrared composite image, which includes data from the Hubble Space Telescope and the James Webb Space Telescope. This new image has incredible depth thanks to the Hubble Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) and the Web’s powerful Mid-Infrared (MIRI) instrument that captures a wide range of wavelengths. The red color indicates dust accumulating in the galaxy’s arms, and the bright orange is the hotter dust region. Young stars across the nuclear arms and core are selected in blue. Heavier, older stars appear towards the center of the galaxy in cyan and green, revealing the eerie glow of the ghost galaxy’s core. Star-forming bubbles also appear in pink on the arms. It’s rare to see the various features of a galaxy in one photo.

The European Space Agency (MIRI) and the US Space Agency (NASA), contributed with instruments designed and built by a nationally funded European Institute consortium (MIRI European Consortium) in partnership with Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of Arizona.