The (Not So) Curious Case of Galaxy IC 335
This odd-looking galaxy has recently become famous in the media, not for what it has but for what is missing!
IC 335 (credit: Hubble)
A recent Hubble image of this galaxy shows it to be a star-filled galaxy with a flat shape not unlike our own Milky Way. But whereas the Milky Way contains vast collections of nebulae and dust clouds, IC 335 seems to have none of this “interstellar medium.” A look behind the curtain gives us clues to how two similar galaxies like IC 335 and the Milky Way could turn out so differently.
Nature vs. Nurture: IC 335 Didn’t Start Out Looking This Way
This galaxy is a member of a large cluster of galaxies located in the constellation Fornax, at a distance of about 60 million light-years from the Milky Way. The Fornax Cluster contains about 100 galaxies within a volume of space only 10 million light-years across, making it a very tight family of galaxies traveling through space at several million miles per hour. The vast majority of the galaxies in this cluster are only 30,000 to 50,000 light-years across, including IC 335, but NGC 1316 and NGC 1365 are as large as our Milky Way and —> Read More Here