Hubble Interacting Galaxy UGC 8058 (2008-04-24)



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Description The extraordinary galaxy UGC 8058, also known as Markarian 231, was discovered in 1969 as part of a survey searching for galaxies with strong ultraviolet radiation. It has long tidal tails and a disturbed shape. Results from the first spectrum showed clear signs of the presence of a powerful quasar in the center that made Markarian 231 unique in the Markarian sample. Markarian 231 has maintained its reputation as an exceptional object since those early observations and continues to be a favorite target in all wavelength regimes. Its infrared luminosity is similar to that of quasars, making it one of the most luminous and powerful known ultra-luminous infrared galaxies. Although the emission of many ultra-luminous infrared galaxies appears to be dominated by energetic starbursts, Markarian 231 has been repeatedly identified as an exception and many pieces of evidence point toward an accreting black hole as the major power source behind the enormous infrared luminosity. Although the primary power source behind the incredible far-infrared luminosity of Markarian 231 is almost certainly an active nucleus, the galaxy is also undergoing an energetic starburst. Most dramatically a nuclear ring of active star formation with a rate estimated to be greater than 100 solar masses per year has been found in the center. UGC 8058 is located about 600 million light-years away from Earth.

This image is part of a large collection of 59 images of merging galaxies taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and released on the occasion of its 18th anniversary on 24th April 2008.

About the object
Object name UGC 8058, Mrk 0231, VII Zw 490, QSO B1254+571
Object description Interacting Galaxies
Position (J2000) 12 56 13.96
+56 52 27.3
Constellation Ursa Major
Distance 550 million light-years (150 million parsecs)
About the data
Data description The Hubble image was created using HST data from proposal 10592: A. Evans (University of Virginia, Charlottesville/NRAO/Stony Brook University)
Instrument ACS/WFC
Exposure date(s) May 10, 2002
Exposure time 38 minutes
Filters F435W (B) and F814W (I)
Date 24 April 2008(2008-04-24)
Source http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2008/16/image/cd/ (direct link)
Author NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration, and A. Evans (University of Virginia, Charlottesville/NRAO/Stony Brook University)
(Reusing this file)
Public domain This file is in the public domain because it was created by NASA and ESA. Hubble material is copyright-free and may be freely used as in the public domain without fee, on the condition that NASA and ESA is credited as the source of the material. The material was created for NASA by Space Telescope Science Institute and for ESA by the Hubble European Space Agency Information Centre under Contract NAS5-26555. Copyright statement at hubblesite.org or copyright statement at spacetelescope.org.
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EXIF data:
File name hubble_interacting_galaxy_ugc_8058__2008-04-24_.jpg
Size, bytes 6097236
Mime type image/jpeg
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