Galaxies have mostly predictable shapes that come from stars and solar systems orbiting around a central point or two. They can be oval or spiral armed, but rectangular? Apparently yes, they can also be rectangular.
Named LEDA 074886, the dwarf galaxy is located 70 million light years away within a group of approximately 250 other galaxies.
Most galaxies are either spheroid, disc-shaped or scattered and irregular, so this unique rectangular shaped find delighted the team that found it.
“It’s one of those things that just makes you smile because it shouldn’t exist, or rather you don’t expect it to exist,” said Associate Professor Alister Graham of Swinburne University of Technology in Australia in a release by the institution.
Not only did they not expect it to exist, they weren’t even looking for it. The international team from Australia, Switzerland, Finland and Germany spotted it in a wide field-of-view image taken with the Japanese Subaru Telescope for an unrelated program by Swinburne astrophysicist Dr. Lee Spiler.
The best guess right now is that the rectangular shape came from two spheroid galaxies crashing together and that eventually, it will turn into more of a familiar rounded galaxy.
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