Fig 2: Artist's depiction of the night sky as seen from a planet at the heart of an ultracompact galaxy. More than a million stars are visible with the naked eye, in contrast to the few thousand visible from Earth. Image credit: NASA, ESA, G. Bacon (STScI) and P. van Dokkum (Yale University)
Fig 3. Reconstructed spectrum of light from the ultracompact galaxies M59-UCD3, as seen by the SOAR telescope (top) and M85-HCC1, as seen by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (bottom). Dark bands are the fingerprints of atoms and molecules in the atmospheres of the stars in the galaxy. These bands reveal the compositions and ages of the stars as well as the velocities of the galaxies.
Two undergraduates at San José State University have discovered two galaxies that are the densest known. Similar to ordinary globular star clusters but a hundred to a thousand times brighter, the new systems have properties intermediate in size and luminosity between galaxies and star clusters.
Dr. Aaron Romanowsky
Department of Physics and Astronomy
San José State University
One Washington Square
San Jose, CA 95192 USA