This picture from the NASA/ESA Hubble House Telescope reveals a glistening and historical globular cluster named NGC 3201 — a gathering of lots of of hundreds of stars sure collectively by gravity. NGC 3201 was found in 1826 by the Scottish astronomer James Dunlop, who described it as a “fairly giant, fairly vibrant” object that turns into “moderately irregular” in the direction of its centre.
Globular clusters are discovered round all giant galaxies, however their origin and function in galaxy formation stay tantalisingly unclear. Astronomers just lately found a black gap lurking on the coronary heart of NGC 3201 — its place was revealed by the unusual actions of a star being rapidly flung round a large, invisible counterpart. This glowing group of stars additionally has some unusual properties which make it distinctive amongst the over 150 globular clusters belonging to the Milky Approach. NGC 3201 has an especially quick velocity with respect to the Solar and its orbit is retrograde, that means that it strikes speedily in the wrong way to the galactic centre, which it orbits.
The weird behaviour of this cluster means that it could have extragalactic origins, however in some unspecified time in the future was captured by the Milky Approach’s gravity. Nonetheless, the chemical make-up of this intriguing cluster tells a special story — the celebs inside NGC 3201 are chemically similar to these of different galactic globular clusters, implying that they shaped at an identical location and time to their neighbours.
Whether or not this mysterious cluster was adopted by our galaxy or has for some motive developed very otherwise to the household of clusters it grew up with, it’s definitely an uncommon astronomical magnificence.
Picture Credit score: ESA/Hubble & NASA
Clarification from: https://www.spacetelescope.org/photos/potw1804a/