The galaxy is officially named Messier 51 (M51) or NGC 5194, but often goes by its nickname of the “Whirlpool Galaxy.” Like the Milky Way, the Whirlpool is a spiral galaxy with spectacular arms of stars and dust. M51 is located 30 million light years from Earth, and its face-on orientation to Earth gives us a perspective that we can never get of our own spiral galactic home.
A Tidal Galaxy "A previously unsuspected tidal dwarf galaxy candidate appears only in the ultraviolet, indicating the presence of many hot young stars as seen in this cool space Image. IC 4970, the small disk galaxy interacting with NGC 6872, is located above the spiral’s central region. The spiral is 522,000 light-years across from the tip of one outstretched arm to the tip of the other, which makes it about five times the size of our home galaxy, the Milky Way