The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has spotted the "UFO Galaxy." NGC 2683 is a spiral galaxy observed practically edge-on, providing it the form of a basic science fiction spaceship. This is why the astronomers at the Astronaut Memorial Planetarium and Observatory, Cocoa, Fla., gave it this attention-grabbing nickname.
Even though a bird's eye view allows us see the thorough framework of a galaxy (such as this Hubble image of a barred spiral), a side-on view has its very own perks. In distinct, it provides astronomers a great option to see the fragile dusty lanes of the spiral arms silhouetted towards the golden haze of the galaxy's core. In addition, excellent clusters of young blue stars shine scattered through the disc, mapping the galaxy's star-forming regions.
Perhaps remarkably, side-on views of galaxies like this one do not prevent astronomers from deducing their structures. Studies of the homes of the light coming from NGC 2683 suggest that this is a barred spiral galaxy, even although the angle we see it at does not permit us see this right.
NGC 2683, learned on Feb. 5, 1788, by the famous astronomer William Herschel, lies in the Northern constellation of Lynx ( via zimbio.com ).