Rubin’s Galaxy: A Gentle Giant Spiral Galaxy

Dr. Benne Holwerda, University of Louisville

In the 1980s, astronomer Vera Rubin discovered that the spiral galaxy UGC 2885 is the most extended disk galaxy in the local universe. In addition, this galaxy is close enough for high-resolution Hubble studies. As such, this galaxy provides an intriguing test of the observed scaling relationships between the characteristics of a galaxy and the characteristics of its globular star cluster population. As part of Hubble’s 30th anniversary commemoration, a new, 74-megapixel, mosaic image of the newly nicknamed “Rubin’s Galaxy” was released in January 2020. Dr. Holwerda will describe the observation and analysis, with first results on the globular cluster population of this massive disk galaxy.

Host: Dr. Frank Summers, STScI

Recorded live on Wednesday, June 3, 2020. More information: