Pictures of the Sombrero Galaxy
The Sombrero Galaxy is an edge-on galaxy in Virgo that resembles the famous broad style of headwear.
The Sombrero Galaxy is an edge-on galaxy located 28 million lightyears away in the Virgo constellation, and with a mass of about 800 billion Suns, is one of the most massive objects in the Virgo Galaxy Cluster (which also contains the famous Markarian's Chain).
M104, as it is formally known in the famous Messier Catalogue, is nicknamed the Sombrero Galaxy due to its edge-on appearance, which makes it look like the famous broad style of hat.
What is visible in images of the Sombrero Galaxy, however, is the thick dust lane bisecting the bright galactic centre.
This dust lane is a region of fierce star formation in the galaxy, as gas and dust coalesces and collapses and begins the process of star formation.
The Sombrero Galaxy is also thought to be home to up to 2,000 globular clusters, which at about 10-13 billion years old are some of the oldest objects in the Universe.
Below is a selection of images of the Sombrero Galaxy captured by amateur astrophotographers.