What's the closest active galaxy to
That would be Centaurus A, only 11 million light-years distant.
Spanning over 60,000 light-years, the peculiar elliptical galaxy is
known as NGC 5128.
Forged in a
collision of two
otherwise normal galaxies, Centaurus A's
fantastic jumble of young blue star clusters, pinkish star forming
regions, and imposing dark dust lanes are seen here in remarkable detail.
colorful galaxy portrait is a composite of image data
from space- and ground-based telescopes large and small.
the galaxy's center, left over cosmic debris is steadily
being consumed by a central black hole with a billion times
the mass of the Sun.
in other active galaxies, that process generates the radio,
X-ray, and gamma-ray energy radiated by Centaurus A.