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Uploaded on Apr 8, 2010
The Hubble Space Telescope zooms into Messier 66, the largest galaxy within the Leo Triplet. M66 is located at a distance of about 35 million light-years in the constellation of Leo.
Messier 66 is the proud owner of exclusive asymmetric spiral arms which seem to climb above the galaxy's main disc and an apparently displaced nucleus. This asymmetry is unusual; most often, dense waves of gas, dust and newly born stars wind about the galaxy's centre in a symmetric way. Astronomers believe that Messier 66's once orderly shape has most likely been distorted by the gravitational pull of its two neighbors.