An image of two galaxies intertwined against the dark backdrop of space. Both of the galaxies are light in colour, with touched of lilac, pink and red running throughout. Very distant galaxies are seen in the background, most of them spiral shaped and much smaller than the two interacting galaxies.
This system consists of a pair of galaxies, dubbed IC 694 and NGC 3690, which made a close pass some 700 million years ago. As a result of this interaction, the system underwent a fierce burst of star formation. In the last fifteen years or so six supernovae have popped off in the outer reaches of the galaxy, making this system a distinguished supernova factory.
NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration and A. Evans (University of Virginia, Charlottesville/NRAO/Stony Brook University)