45 million light-years

This nearby merging galaxy is known as "The Antennae" due to the antennae-like shape of its two prominent tails. The system is composed of two spiral galaxies in the process of merging and passing through one another, throwing off two long, narrow tidal streamers. The image shows a true-colour representation of the visible starlight, with the neutral atomic gas that emits radio emission depicted in blue.

Credit: NRAO / AUI and J. Hibbard.