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Also known as the Seyfert Sextet, five members of this group of six galaxies is receding from us at nearly the same velocity of more than 4000 km/s. The sixth member is receding at almost 20000 km/s suggesting it is not a gravitationally bound member of the group. Instead, it is likely coincidently aligned and is much farther away that the others.
The small image at the left shows each member of the Sextet and their redshift velocities. In time, the five bound neighbors will merge into one larger diffuse elliptical galaxy. The farther member will remain undisturbed. Note the large number of very small images of other galaxies scattered about which are not part of the Sextet.
The Cat’s Eye Nebula is estimated to be only about 1000 yrs old. It might have been a binary of two stars orbiting in close proximity. The center of the image shows a remnant white dwarf star, common to other nebulae. It is too small to resolve whether there are two. It is about 3000 light years away. The complex structure twists around the central star(s) due to the rotation of the binary as it expelled the gases during the last stages of the stellar life cycle.