Washington: The uncanny resemblance of NGC 6744, a galaxy about 30 million light years away from Earth, to our own Milky Way has astounded astronomers.
The European Southern Observatory describes its snap of NGC 6744 as "almost a picture postcard" of our home, featuring "striking spiral arms wrapping around a dense, elongated nucleus and a dusty disc".
One difference between NGC 6744 and the Milky Way is their size. NGC 6744 is actually almost twice the 100,000 light-year width of the Milky Way and extends about two-thirds the width of the full Moon.
This dramatic object is one of the largest and nearest spiral galaxies, with the ESO describing it as "one of the most beautiful objects in the southern sky".
The impressive photo was grabbed by "the Wide Field Imager attached to the MPG/ESO 2.2 metre telescope at ESO``s La Silla Observatory in Chile".