Galaxies Look Like 'Star Trek' Spaceship in Incredible Hubble Telescope Photo

The Hubble Space Telescope has spotted a group of galaxies that are shaped remarkably like the spaceship USS Enterprise of Star Trek fame.

An iconic fictional spacecraft, the Enterprise sports a large disk-shaped hull and was often used as a setting in the original Star Trek television series.

In what the European Space Agency (ESA) described as a "happy coincidence," Hubble has managed to snap an interaction between three galaxies which, from our perspective, looks just like the ship.

NGC 7764A
The galaxy group NGC 7764A as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope and released on January 24. The European Space Agency likened two of the galaxies to the USS Enterprise spaceship. ESA/Hubble & NASA, J. Dalcanton, Dark Energy Survey, DOE, FNAL, DECam, CTIO, NOIRLab/NSF/AURA, ESO Acknowledgement: J. Schmidt

The three galaxies are collectively known as NGC 7764A and are located around 425 million light-years away from Earth in the Phoenix constellation.

In the image, the two galaxies at the upper right of the image look as though they are interacting with one another, producing long trails of stars and gas.

The ESA described the galaxies as giving the impression that they had "both just been struck at great speed," perhaps by the third galaxy in the group seen at the bottom left of the image.

In reality, galaxy collisions happen over extremely long periods of time and it's not clear whether the bottom-left galaxy is really interacting with the other two.

The photo was snapped using Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) and Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3). Aside from the three main galaxies in the photo, the background is also flecked with more distant galaxies too numerous to count.

It is not the first time that Hubble has captured mesmerizing images of multiple galaxies.

In 2021, the telescope captured an image of a dramatic trio of galaxies engaged in what NASA described as a "gravitational tug of war" and likened them to bickering siblings. The galaxy group is known as Arp 195.

It's not only strange-looking galaxies that Hubble has peered at over the years; the telescope has also captured stunning images of other cosmic objects like stars and dusty nebula.

In 2021, Newsweek compiled a list of some spooky space shots captured by the telescope including a ghostly-looking shot of the star CW Leonis which looks somewhat like a single, glowing orange eye.

Astronomy fans can look forward to more Hubble images in future, as the telescope will continue to operate alongside the recently launched James Webb Space Telescope which is set to make its first observations later this year.

Hubble is set to remain as a primary tool for viewing the visible and ultraviolet light spectrum, while Webb will become the primary deep space imaging telescope for infrared wavelengths.