This image of the nearby edge-on spiral galaxy NGC 55 was taken by NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer on September 14, 2003, during 2 orbits. This galaxy lies 5.4 million light years from our Milky Way galaxy.

This image of the nearby edge-on spiral galaxy NGC 55 was taken by Galaxy Evolution Explorer on September 14, 2003, during 2 orbits. This galaxy lies 5.4 million light years from our Milky Way galaxy and is a member of the "local group" of galaxies that also includes the Andromeda galaxy (M31), the Magellanic clouds, and 40 other galaxies. The spiral disk of NGC 55 is inclined to our line of sight by approximately 80 degrees and so this galaxy looks cigar-shaped. This picture is a combination of Galaxy Evolution Explorer images taken with the far ultraviolet (colored blue) and near ultraviolet detectors, (colored red). The bright blue regions in this image are areas of active star formation detected in the ultraviolet by Galaxy Evolution Explorer. The red stars in this image are foreground stars in our own Milky Way galaxy.

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