50 Shocking Facts About Spiral Galaxies

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A spiral galaxy is a type of galaxy that appears to have a flattened, bulged disk around the center that slowly spirals around the center. The center contains stars, gas, dust, dark matter, and powerful black holes. William Herschel cataloged galaxies in the 18th century. In 1936, Edwin Hubble first discovered spiral galaxies in his book "The Realm of Nebulae". They are named based on their size. We have the Milky Way living in a spiral galaxy called Currently, about 60% of the galaxies in the universe are spiral in shape.

50 Shocking Facts About Spiral Galaxies

Shocking Facts About Spiral Galaxies

  • The most common type of galaxy is the spiral galaxy.
  • An example of a Sc spiral galaxy is BX442.
  • An example of a SBa spiral galaxy is NGC 4314.
  • An example of a SBc spiral galaxy is NGC 3953.
  • Spiral galaxies are also known as disk galaxies.
  • Spiral galaxies have a bulging center which is called the bulge.
  • The bulge of a spiral galaxy contains old stars and a black hole.
  • The closest spiral galaxy to our Milky Way is the Andromeda galaxy.
  • The majority of the mass of a spiral galaxy is made up of Dark Matter.
  • An example of a Sb spiral galaxy is PGC 69533, also known as UGC 12158.
  • An example of a SBb spiral galaxy is Messier 95, also known as NGC 3351.
  • A barred spiral galaxy is one that has a core that is shaped like a bar.
  • About 77% of the galaxies that have been observed by man are spiral galaxies.
  • About two thirds of all spiral galaxies are considered Barred Spiral Galaxies.
  • As of 2005, the Milky Way galaxy has been classified as a Barred Spiral Galaxy.
  • An example of a Sa spiral galaxy is the Andromeda Galaxy, also known as NGC 224.
  • A spiral galaxy is a type of galaxy on the Hubble sequence classification scheme.

Interesting Facts About Spiral Galaxies for Kids

  • All spiral galaxies have a supermassive black hole in the very center of their bulge.
  • Our galaxy, the Milky Way, is a barred spiral galaxy and the home of our Solar System.
  • There are six main types of spiral galaxies, and they are Sa, Sb, Sc, SBa, SBb and SBc.
  • The really bright spots that can be seen in spiral galaxies are newly formed, large stars.
  • Spiral galaxies are separated into smaller groups based on how tightly wound the arms are.
  • The matter that holds the stars and dust together in a spiral galaxy is called Dark Matter.
  • A spiral galaxy has a spiral like structure and will have well-defined arms extending outwards.
  • A spiral galaxy is called a grand design spiral galaxy when it has prominent, well-defined arms.
  • Along with the other types of galaxy, the Spiral galaxy was first defined by Edwin Hubble in 1936.
  • The oldest spiral galaxy in the known universe is BX422, with an estimated age of 11 billion years old.
  • Type A galaxies have tightly wound arms, type b have looser arms, and type c have extremely loose arms.
  • Sometimes galaxies merge with each which causes them to grow bigger or they are destroyed all together.
  • The larger a galaxy is, the faster that it spins – larger galaxies can spin twice as fast as smaller ones.
  • Large spiral galaxies can spin their arms at a speed of more than 1.25 million miles (2 million km) per hour.

Scientific Facts About Spiral Galaxies

  • The large stars of a spiral galaxy do not last very long because they are constantly burning large amounts of fuel.
  • A spiral galaxy is called a barred spiral galaxy when it has a centralized bar-shaped structured that contains stars.
  • It’s estimated that spiral galaxies and irregular galaxies make up to 60% of the galaxies in the observable universe.
  • Spiral galaxies are further classified by how tight their arms are e.g. A-type have tight arms, whereas C type have loose arms.
  • The center of a spiral galaxy is something we call the Bulge, which is a very large group of stars, giving a super bright appearance.
  • The first galaxies were actually discovered in the 17th Century, although they were not called galaxies until much later by Edwin Hubble.
  • There are many different examples of galaxies that are spirals, including the Triangulum Galaxy, the Whirlpool Galaxy and the Pinwheel Galaxy.
  • Until 2005, we defined the Milky Way as a spiral galaxy. However, upon closer inspection we confirmed that it us actually a barred spiral galaxy.
  • The former oldest spiral galaxy in our universe is called BX422. It is thought to be around 11 billion years old, two billion years older than any others. This was replaced in 2020 by the Wolfe Disk galaxy, which is more than 12 billion years old.

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