Sunday, September 20, 2009

Megellanic Clouds

The Megellanic Clouds are part of the larger group to which our Milky Way galaxy belongs. These two galaxies are nearest to our Milky Way in space. They were discovered around 1520 by the Portuguese adventurer Megellan when he sailed through the southern areas. These clouds can be seen in the night sky in the Southern Hemisphere or near the equator as hazy glowing patches. Through a powerful telescope, they can be seen to contain millions of stars.
The large Megellanic cloud is about 10,000 million stars. The small Megellanic cloud is 2, 30,000 light years away and contains fewer stars. Both clouds contain bright nebulae where new stars are formed.

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