The Clouds of Magellan, visible in the southern hemisphere with
the unaided eye, are satellite galaxies of the Milky Way located
about 190 thousand light years away. This image shows the
infrared structure of the Large Magellanic Cloud viewed by the Infrared
Astronomical Satellite (IRAS).
The image was produced by combining several hundred strip scans
of the all-sky survey that cover the Galaxy. The infrared
emission from relatively warm sources is coded in blue, from
cooler material in green, and from the coldest material in red.
The blue circular point-like sources are foreground stars in our
Star formation in the Large Cloud may have been triggered by a
tidal interaction between it and the Milky Way. The active star-forming
regions are bright in each IRAS wavelength band and
appear white in the image. The yellow-green diffuse emission is
from cool dust particles distributed throughout the disk of the
Galaxy heated by the older stellar population of the Galaxy.
Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, Caltech/JPL