What happens when close interactions occur between galaxies?
A look at some of the interesting distorted galaxies:
Also included here some descriptions of the pictures posted by other users in this thread.
The Ring Galaxy
(third picture in pushkin's post) : AM 0644-741
"The ring-like shape is the result of the gravitational disruption caused by an entire small intruder galaxy passing through a large one."
Warped Spiral Galaxy
(fifth picture in E_T's post) : ESO510-13
"The causes of spiral warps are still being investigated, but some warps are thought to result from interactions or even collisions between
The Polar Ring Galaxy
(second picture in E_T's post) : NGC 4650 A
"What creates Polar Ring Galaxies is still being researched, but a leading theory is the collision of two distinct galaxies in the distant past.
Polar Ring Galaxies allow astronomers to estimate the amount of dark matter in galaxies by measuring the rotation rate of the highly extended
Hoag's Object: A Strange Ring Galaxy
(sixth picture in E_T's post) :
"How Hoag's Object formed remains unknown, although similar objects have now been identified and collectively labeled as a form of ring galaxy.
Genesis hypotheses include a galaxy collision billions of years ago and perturbative gravitational interactions involving an unusually shaped
Arp 188 Tadpole
Description & Source: antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov...
"During the close encounter, tidal forces drew out the spiral galaxy's stars, gas, and dust forming the spectacular tail. The intruder galaxy
itself, estimated to lie about 300 thousand light-years behind the Tadpole, can be seen through foreground spiral arms at the upper left."
A Cosmic "Bridge"
: Arp 295
Descriptin & Source: antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov...
"The cosmic bridge between the galaxies and the long tail extending below and right of picture center are strong evidence that these two immense star
systems have passed close to each other in the past, allowing violent tides induced by mutual gravity to create the eye-catching plumes of stellar
More coming up...