"Slicing through the dark cold depths of space towards the constellation of Draco, the knife edge disk of the Splinter Galaxy is depicted in this impressively deep image. Otherwise catalogued as NGC 5907, rusty coloured dust lanes near the centre compete with a stainless steel blue outer edge composed of younger stars. This part also features a lower amount of dust obscuration.
The beauty of long exposure images taken with remote observatories under dark skies elucidate incredibly low surface brightness tidal streams. Originally discovered by a team of professional astronomers in 1998, it wasn't until the pioneering work of David Martinez-Delgado and his crack squad of amateur astro-detectives (of which a certain Mark Hanson is a member) that it was conclusively confirmed as a true definite structure around the galaxy.
Like the myriad of clues left behind at a crime scene, professional astronomers can reconstruct the history of an intergalactic murder mystery but this time involving a huge galaxy like NGC 5907 and a smaller companion galaxy that is disrupted and ultimately destroyed. The tidal stream that is recovered in deep optical images could be thought of as the ghost of the previous satellite galaxy. This structure is the product of the effect of the gravity of the larger galaxy and the decay of the orbit of the smaller galaxy and it leaves behind a trail of stars ripped from it that trace its disrupted orbit around the larger galaxy. This tidal stream has an estimated size of 150,000 light years."
Description by "Sakib Rasool"
"Stellar Winds Observatory" a/k/a Stan Watson Observatory at Dark Sky New Mexico
Planewave 17", LRGB, 900,280,280,280
Planewave 24" Lum 750