An encounter between two (or more) galaxies that is close enough for the mutual gravitational attraction to alter the appearance and, in some cases, the composition, of one or both systems. Classic examples include NGC 5195, the little, tidally distorted companion of the Whirlpool Galaxy, and the Antennae. Extreme cases of interaction result in galaxy mergers or galaxy cannibalism.
Archived newsFrom galaxy collisions to star birth: ISO finds the missing link (Mar 29, 2005)
Related category GALAXIES
Home • About • Copyright © The Worlds of David Darling • Encyclopedia of Alternative Energy • Contact