spiral galaxy


Definition of spiral galaxy

: a galaxy exhibiting a central nucleus or barred structure from which extend curved arms of higher luminosity

called also spiral nebula

Examples of spiral galaxy in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This latest object, known as AGC 114905, is similar in size to our own spiral galaxy yet has 1,000 times fewer stars. Anil Ananthaswamy, Scientific American, 22 Dec. 2021 The potential planet, which is unnamed and roughly the size of Saturn, was spotted in the spiral galaxy Messier 51, or what's known as the Whirlpool Galaxy, about 28 million lightyears away from the Earth, according to NASA. Zoe Christen Jones, CBS News, 29 Oct. 2021 Around 28 million light-years away, a Saturn-sized planet in the spiral galaxy Messier 51 could exist, according to a study published Monday in Nature Astronomy. Asha C. Gilbert, USA TODAY, 26 Oct. 2021 The possible planet was discovered in a spiral galaxy called Messier 51, also known as the Whirlpool Galaxy, which is more than 23 million light-years from Earth. NBC News, 18 Feb. 2021 Earth is in the Milky Way, a spiral galaxy; its stars cluster in spiral arms that swirl around the galaxy’s center. Brian Jackson, The Conversation, 20 Sep. 2021 This is a huge region; for comparison, ten kiloparsec is about the radius of a typical spiral galaxy like our own Milky Way, and a parsec itself is already pretty big, at more than three light-years. Stephon Alexander, Wired, 31 Aug. 2021 The black hole is about 10 million times more massive than our sun, and is located in the center of a nearby spiral galaxy called I Zwicky, 1,800 million light-years away from Earth. William Harwood, CBS News, 5 Aug. 2021 The spiral galaxy captured has three arms, while most galaxies of that kind have an even number. Li Cohen, CBS News, 20 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'spiral galaxy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of spiral galaxy

1913, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for spiral galaxy

Time Traveler

The first known use of spiral galaxy was in 1913

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Dictionary Entries Near spiral galaxy


spiral galaxy

spiral gear

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Statistics for spiral galaxy

Last Updated

11 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Spiral galaxy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spiral%20galaxy. Accessed 20 Jan. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on spiral galaxy

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about spiral galaxy


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