This image was featured at Astronomy Picture of the day on 2013 December 10.
A really cool group of interacting galaxies. Maybe Stephan’s Quintet is more popular. Honestly, this one looks like a quintet to me because the one on the far left is a thicker stream of stars pulled off one of them like a piece of taffy but I guess as far as galaxy mergers go, the distinction between individual galaxies can get a bit difficult.
I did increase the saturation quite a bit along with the usual sharpening.
Edit 2013 Dec 09: I found a way to reduce the noise a bit more while minimally impacting the background galaxies and uploaded a new picture.
Blue: hst_08717_01_wfpc2_f439w_wf_sci + hst_08717_01_wfpc2_f336w_wf_sci
North is NOT up, it’s 10.1° counter-clockwise from up.
Hubble data is public domain, but I put a lot of work into combining it into beautiful color images. The minimal credit line should read: NASA / ESA / J. Schmidt
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.