NGC 3521 is a flocculent spiral galaxy located around 26 million light-years away from Earth in the constellation Leo. The galaxy extends some 50,000 light-years, it features characteristic patchy, irregular spiral arms laced with dust, star forming regions, and clusters of young, blue stars. This deep image also finds NGC 3521 embedded in gigantic bubble-like shells. The shells are likely tidal debris, streams of stars torn from satellite galaxies that have undergone mergers with NGC 3521 in the distant past.
Find a high resolution image from the ESO VLT telescope here.
Image data: LHaRGB (L 21x20m, Ha 6x40m, R 8x20m, G 8x20m, B 8x20m) total 19 h combined. Seeing 0.7-1 arcsec, North is left
80cm f/7 Astrooptik Keller corrected cassegrain, FLI Proline 16803, Baader Filters, Prompt 7 CTIO Chile,
Processing: Johannes Schedler
Image in 30/70% size below
Find below a stretched and inverted image in 25/50% size showing complex streamers and an arc to the top side.