ESO 137-001

Within our Milkyway Galaxy, a massive young star, Infrared Source 4, spews forth super-hot, blue-glowing gas. The crushing dust and gas of the surrounding nebula, Sharpless 2-106, acts like a belt, cinching the expanding nebula into an hourglass shape. Hubble Space Telescope

For me, it is the wonder of the size, distance, and power, of course, but even more the great diversity of the universe. Every view is significantly new and surprising with so many planets and so much undiscovered biological diversity. Earth is entirely unique. Our fossil record and the recent discovery of our neighbor planets show this diversity and corollary uniqueness. So, too, each one of us is a one time creation for one moment within unfathomable space and time.


The arms of the larger spiral galaxy, UGC 1810, in the Hubble photo to the right, show distortion probably caused by the twisted companion galaxy, UGC 1813, (viewed on edge) passing through. Blue indicates intense star-forming regions in the wake of such forces. Perhaps a small third galaxy whirls beyond the inner arm of the larger galaxy.  Click image to enlarge.