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Uploaded on Feb 5, 2008
Polar Ring Galaxies, such as NGC4650A, are a class of galaxy which have two kinematically distinct components that are inclined by almost 90 degrees to each other. These striking galaxies challenge our understanding of how galaxies form; the origin of their distinct components has, until now remained uncertain, and the subject of much debate. This simlation shows the formation of a polar disk galaxy. The animation begins with the gas expanding with the Hubble Flow, before collapsing under gravity and forming a disk. After a major merger, a disk galaxy rapidly re-forms. Subsequently, gas begins to be accreted from a direction highly inclined to the inner disk, with a polar disk forming which is perpendicular to the original disk. Credits: Fabio Governato (University of Washington) James Wadsley (McMaster University) Alyson Brooks (University of Washington) Tom Quinn (University of Washington) Chris Brook (University of Washington) for the detailed science, see http://arxiv.org/abs/0802.1051 contact: email@example.com