Is the curve caused by gravitational lensing?

cutout (1)

I would think not in this case – you need some mass to do the lensing! This could be the superposition of two galaxies.

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superposition? isnt that groundbreaking?

or is that maybe the proper term for merging galaxies?

by superposition, I just mean, overlapping, but not at the same redshift so not interacting.

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oh ok i understand, thanks!