NGC 6744 is an intermediate spiral galaxy about 30 million light-years away in the constellation Pavo.
What is NGC 6744?
It is thought to be one of the most Milky Way-like spiral galaxies in our immediate vicinity, with flocculent (fluffy) arms and an elongated core. It also has at least one distorted companion galaxy (NGC 6744A) superficially similar to one of the Magellanic Clouds. A supernova was discovered in the galaxy in 2005.
Spiral galaxies form a class of galaxy originally described by Edwin Hubble in his 1936 work The Realm of the Nebulae and, as such, form part of the Hubble sequence. Most spiral galaxies consist of a flat, rotating disk containing stars, gas and dust, and a central concentration of stars known as the bulge. These are often surrounded by a much fainter halo of stars, many of which reside in globular clusters. Spiral galaxies are named by their spiral structures that extend from the center into the galactic disc. The spiral arms are sites of ongoing star formation and are brighter than the surrounding disc because of the young, hot OB stars that inhabit them.
In the 1970s, our own Milky Way was confirmed to be a barred spiral, although the bar itself is difficult to observe from the Earth’s current position within the galactic disc. The most convincing evidence for the stars forming a bar in the galactic center comes from several recent surveys, including the Spitzer Space Telescope. Together with irregular galaxies, spiral galaxies make up approximately 60% of galaxies in today’s universe. They are mostly found in low-density regions and are rare in the centers of galaxy clusters.
Text: Wikipedia contributors. “NGC 6744.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 9 Jun. 2017. Web. 7 Aug. 2017. & Wikipedia contributors. “Spiral galaxy.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 12 Jul. 2017. Web. 7 Aug. 2017.