NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope new image shows NGC 7026, a planetary nebula. Located just beyond the tip of the tail of the constellation of Cygnus (The Swan), this butterfly-shaped cloud of glowing gas and dust is the wreckage of a star similar to the Sun. Planetary nebulae, despite their name, have nothing to do with planets. They are in fact a relatively short-lived phenomenon that occurs at the end of the life of mid-sized stars.
The Messier 78 nebula (NGC 2068), is often called the reflection nebula, because its dust particles reflect the starlight that falls on them. These pockets of dust typically hide more interesting cosmic objects, but the new photo of Messier 78 and its surroundings demonstrates the beauty of dust particles in space. Dense clouds of gas and dust are important to astronomers because they are the birthplaces of new stars.
These bright stars shining through what looks like a haze in the night sky are part of a young stellar grouping in one of the largest known star formation regions of the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), a dwarf satellite galaxy of the Milky Way.The LMC is the third closest galaxy to our Milky Way. It is located some 160 000 light-years away, and is about 100 times smaller than our own. The image was captured by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope’s Wide Field Planetary Camera 2.
New photo from the Hubble Space Telescope has captured an unprecedented panoramic view of the Tarantula nebula, revealing its bright heart of massive stars. The photo is actually a colossal mosaic, one of the largest ever built from Hubble images, and shows an intense star-forming hotspot called 30 Doradus. Hubble’s science team unveiled this new image on April 17. Hubble’s new view of the region inside the Tarantula nebula shows massive stars’ winds carving cavities into gas clouds, creating a fantasy landscape of pillars, ridges and valleys.
NASA’s Galaxy Evolution Explorer satellite (GALEX) snapped a spectacular photo of a wispy blue nebula with an odd twist. It looks like a giant human head in deep space. NASA’s Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX), which took the Cygnus Loop nebula photo, was launched in April 2003 on a mission to map vast areas of the sky in the ultraviolet range of the light spectrum. The spacecraft completed its primary mission in 2007 and was placed in standby mode as engineers prepare to shut it down for good later this year.
The globular cluster, called Messier 9, shines in this new photo from the Hubble Space Telescope.The cluster Messier 9 contains hordes of stars swarming in a spherical cloud about 25,000 light-years from Earth. The object is too faint to be seen with the naked eye, and when it was discovered by French astronomer Charles Messier in 1764, the scientist could only resolve it as a faint smudge that he classified as a nebula. Hubble Space Telescope released a new picture of Messier 9 on March 16.
Astronomers have spotted young stars in the Orion nebula changing right before their eyes, thanks to the European Space Agency’s Herschel Space Observatory and NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope. The colorful specks are rapidly heating up and cooling down, speaking to the turbulent, rough-and-tumble process of reaching full stellar adulthood. The rainbow of colors represents different wavelengths of infrared light captured by both Spitzer and Herschel. Spitzer is designed to see shorter infrared wavelengths than Herschel.
This image of NGC 1333 nebula which was taken by French skywatcher Jean-Pierre Brahic, in December 2011, reveals nebula’s blue glow.The reflection nebula is located in the constellation Perseus. A reflection nebula is a cloud of dust visible with the help of energy from a nearby star or stars. These nebula are typically blue in color because the carbon dust particles reflect blue light more efficiently than red light. NGC 1333 is 1,000 light-years away at the edge of a large star-forming cloud. A light-year is the distance light travels in one year, or about 6 trillion miles (10 trillion kilometers).
This visible-light image that was taken by the high resolution channel of Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys shows planetary nebula Hen 3-1333. Planetary nebulae have nothing to do with planets, they actually represent the death throes of mid-sized stars like the sun. As they puff out their outer layers, large, irregular globes of glowing gas expand around them, which appeared planet-like through the small telescopes that were used by their first discoverers. The star at the heart of Hen 3-1333 is thought to have a mass of around 60% that of the sun, but unlike the sun, its apparent brightness varies substantially over time.