Messier 96, a spiral galaxy

September 09, 2015

This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows Messier 96, a spiral galaxy just over 35 million light-years away in the constellation of Leo (The Lion). It is of about the same mass and size as the Milky Way. It was first discovered by astronomer Pierre Méchain in 1781, and added to Charles Messier’s famous catalogue of astronomical objects just four days later.

Image Credit: 
ESA/Hubble & NASA and the LEGUS Team, Acknowledgement: R. Gendler