NASA says its Hubble telescope captured a spiral galaxy that's as bright as a jewel and 68 million light-years from Earth

An image of NGC 1385 a spiral galaxy 68 million light-years from Earth
The galaxy is known as NGC 1385. ESA/Hubble & NASA, J. Lee and the PHANGS-HST Team
  • NASA published a "jewel-bright" photo of a spiral galaxy many millions of light-years from Earth.

  • The galaxy - NGC 1385 - is in the Fornax constellation.

  • The constellation's name is Latin for "furnace."

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The Hubble Space Telescope captured an image of a "jewel-bright" spiral galaxy, which is 68 million light-years from Earth.

NASA and the European Space Agency published the photo. NASA said in a Friday blog post that it showed NGC 1385, a galaxy in the constellation Fornax.

Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3 - a "workhorse camera" - captured the image, the US space agency said. The camera was installed in 2019 during astronauts most recent Hubble visit, it added.

The name Fornax is not from "an animal or an ancient god," said NASA, but instead comes from the Latin word for furnace.

"The constellation was named Fornax by Nicolas-Louis de Lacaille, a French astronomer born in 1713," the ESA said in text accompanying the photo.

The agency added: "Lacaille named 14 of the 88 constellations we still recognize today. He seems to have had a penchant for naming constellations after scientific instruments, including Atlia (the air pump), Norma (the ruler, or set square), and Telescopium (the telescope)."

The photo was the latest in a long succession of beautiful photos captured by the cameras aboard the Hubble Space Telescope during its three decades observing the cosmos.

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