NASA finds ‘Lost Galaxy’ shining out of Virgo’s bosom

NASA finds ‘Lost Galaxy’ shining out of Virgo’s bosom

In the 1950s, when amateur astronomer Leland S. Copeland first fixed his telescope lens on a distant galaxy in the Virgo constellation, he saw an eerie spiral shrouded in dust. Copeland — who was a professional poet fond of writing about the cosmos — dubbed the spiral “The Lost Galaxy,” a name that has stuck some 70 years later.

Less-poetic scientists know this galaxy as NGC 4535, one of the largest of the 2,000-or-so galaxies in the Virgo Cluster located about 50 million light-years from Earth. When viewed through NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, which captured the stunning image above, the haze that clouded Copeland’s Lost Galaxy vanishes to reveal a vibrant sea of stars not so different from the Milky Way.

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