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The Question

(Submitted September 12, 2005)

I know there are different types of galaxies, so does the size of the galaxy vary according to the type?

The Answer

Well, yes, sort of, but it's a little bit more complicated.

The biggest galaxies we know of are elliptical - but on the other hand, there are small ones, too (called "dwarf elliptical galaxies").

The spiral galaxies tend to be in the medium large range.

The smallest galaxies are often irregular.

See, for example,
http://cas.sdss.org/dr6/en/astro/galaxies/galaxies.asp
for more.

Hope this helps,

Koji & Kevin
for "Ask an Astrophysicist"

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