James Webb captures ‘ghost galaxy’ images like never before
This new image was taken as part of James Webb’s collaboration with the PHANGS project.
PHANGS, which stands for Physics at High Angular Resolution in Nearby Galaxies, previously conducted the first survey of stellar nurseries in 90 galaxies. Its observations of Messier 74 have led to new James-Webb images of the ghost galaxy and are part of a survey of 19 nearby galaxies.
The PHANGS project wants to better understand how stars form. So it turned to Messier 74 and other galaxies around us to find those answers. So far, the results of these observations have not been satisfactory.
This isn’t the first time people have looked at Messier 74, either. Previously, the Hubble Space Telescope captured images of this galaxy.
While that image is stunning on its own, it contains nowhere near the number of ghost galaxies that James Webb has captured. Messier 74 is often referred to as the ghost galaxy because it appears so faint in our sky. This makes it hard to spot — sometimes impossible. Therefore, it is called “ghost” in astronomical circles.
These ongoing observations are just a continuation of James Webb’s work studying our universe. Back in July, NASA released the first images of James Webb. These images provide a detailed and colorful look at the early universe. Now, James Webb plans to use its infrared sensors to explore more of the universe. These sensors allow us to see beyond normal human standards. Getting another great look at the Ghost Galaxy is a byproduct of James Webb’s ongoing work.