Read at Inverse
The galaxy AM 1054-325 has a distorted shape and a bright smear at one end due to a close encounter with another galaxy.
"Contrary to what you might think, galaxy collisions do not destroy stars. In fact, the rough-and-tumble dynamics trigger new generations of stars, and presumably accompanying planets," Hubble Space Telescope officials wrote in a description published alongside the new image on Thursday.
A recent survey using the Hubble Space Telescope found 425 clusters of new stars within the tidal tails of interacting galaxies. These clusters contain very young stars, only about 10 million years old.
This tells astronomers that tails make new stars very efficiently. Like with shelf-stable flour, molecular hydrogen in these galaxies was lying inert. But with enough heat, pressure, and the right recipe, this ingredient could easily turn into something exciting.