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Latest Nebula Stories

972f6d037f71e75276ae2976cd6888ea1
2009-07-16 08:05:00

Today ESO has released a new and stunning image of the sky around the Eagle Nebula, a stellar nursery where infant star clusters carve out monster columns of dust and gas. Located 7000 light-years away, towards the constellation of Serpens (the Snake), the Eagle Nebula is a dazzling stellar nursery, a region of gas and dust where young stars are currently being formed and where a cluster of massive, hot stars, NGC 6611, has just been born. The powerful light and strong winds from these...

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2009-07-07 08:05:00

The Omega Nebula, a stellar nursery where infant stars illuminate and sculpt a vast pastel fantasy of dust and gas, is revealed in all its glory by a new ESO image. The Omega Nebula, sometimes called the Swan Nebula, is a dazzling stellar nursery located about 5500 light-years away towards the constellation of Sagittarius (the Archer). An active star-forming region of gas and dust about 15 light-years across, the nebula has recently spawned a cluster of massive, hot stars. The intense light...

2009-06-09 15:51:04

The astrophysicist João Alves, director of the Calar Alto Observatory in Almeria, and his colleague Andreas Brkert, from the German observatory in the University of Munich, believe that "the inevitable future of the starless cloud Barnard 68" is to collapse and give rise to a new star, according to an article which has been published recently in The Astrophysical Journal.Barnard 68 (B68) is a dark nebula located in the constellation of Ofiuco, around 400 light years away....

349fc64f4417d2310bd52d886471080d1
2009-05-20 09:45:00

Using ESO's Very Large Telescope, astronomers have succeeded in measuring the size of giant galaxy Messier 87 and were surprised to find that its outer parts have been stripped away by still unknown effects. The galaxy also appears to be on a collision course with another giant galaxy in this very dynamic cluster. The new observations reveal that Messier 87's halo of stars has been cut short, with a diameter of about a million light-years, significantly smaller than expected, despite being...

cb7bf78a85b377f0e983c062ac3ab69b1
2009-05-10 13:35:00

The Hubble community bids farewell to the soon-to-be decommissioned Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 onboard NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. In tribute to Hubble's longest-running optical camera, which was developed and built by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., a planetary nebula has been imaged as the camera's final "pretty picture." This planetary nebula is known as Kohoutek 4-55 (or K 4-55). It is one of a series of planetary nebulae that were named after their...

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2009-05-06 07:05:00

Designed and built by JPL, the Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 has been the workhorse camera on NASA's Hubble Space telescope's since it was added to the observatory in December of 1993. The camera has produced most of the stunning images that have been released by Hubble during its 15-plus years of service. Its high image resolution and quality are some of the reasons the camera became the space telescope's most requested instrument. Throughout history, humanity has been moved by the work...

3a892f4b3a77795fb7dd8d4bd2ac69921
2009-04-23 09:40:04

Research by astronomers at the Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies suggests that shadows hold the key to how giant star-forming structures like the famous "Pillars of Creation" take shape. The pillars are dense columns within giant clouds of dust and gas where massive stars form.  Several theories have been proposed to explain why the pillars develop around the edge of ionized gas bubbles surrounding young, very hot stars. Using computer models, the Dublin group has found that...

1f0088a0ff6d82e8d6e72c5b650811d61
2009-04-22 08:57:08

Using the NASA Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) satellite, a team of astronomers have discovered an object predicted, but never seen before "“ a "Ëœjet trail' nebula. Team leader Dr Klaas Wiersema of the University of Leicester will present the discovery on Wednesday 22nd April at the European Week of Astronomy and Space Science conference at the University of Hertfordshire. The RXTE satellite has been scanning the centre of our galaxy every few days for the last years,...

c6cbc319a61359caead8e0334423629c
2009-04-04 11:00:00

A small, dense object only twelve miles in diameter is responsible for this beautiful X-ray nebula that spans 150 light years. At the center of this image made by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory is a very young and powerful pulsar, known as PSR B1509-58, or B1509 for short. The pulsar is a rapidly spinning neutron star which is spewing energy out into the space around it to create complex and intriguing structures, including one that resembles a large cosmic hand. In this image, the lowest...

e56a3af71cb667d500e75c523afa38701
2009-03-12 12:40:00

The "Cat's Eye" nebula, or NGC 6543, is a well-studied example of a "planetary nebula." Such objects are the glowing remnants of dust and gas expelled from moderate-sized stars during their last stages of life. Our own sun will generate such a nebula in about five billion years. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has studied many such planetary nebulae in infrared light, including a variety of more distant ones, which have helped scientists identify a population of carbon-bearing stars near our...


Latest Nebula Reference Libraries

6_19859ff34fd03d00777232e2520ce83f5
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Supernova Remnant -- A supernova remnant (SNR) is made up of the materials left behind by the gigantic explosion of a star in a supernova. There are two possible routes to this end: either a massive star may cease to generate fusion energy in its core, and collapse inward under the force of its own gravity, or a white dwarf star may accumulate material from a companion star until it reaches a critical mass and undergoes a similar collapse. In either case, the resulting supernova...

6_d67b2db586c7facec8388b5df78e57912
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Star -- A star is a self-gravitating sphere of plasma in hydrostatic equilibrium that generates energy in its interior through the process of nuclear fusion. Energy from this process radiates into space as electromagnetic radiation and neutrinos. Star formation and evolution As learned by star formation astronomers, stars are born in molecular clouds, regions of higher density of matter, and form by gravitational instability inside those clouds. High mass stars illuminate powerfully...

6_386b5e7a7ed089dc0a3363e0980dbb032
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Reflection Nebula -- In astronomy, reflection nebulae are clouds of dust which are simply reflecting the light of a nearby star or stars. The nearby star or stars are not hot enough to cause ionization in the gas of the nebula like in emission nebulae but are bright enough to give sufficient scattering to make the dust visible. The distiction between these two types of nebulae was done by Hubble in 1922. They are usually blue because the scattering is more efficient for blue light...

6_c65813e67f1bee99b0418c20e5cbbe582
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Planetary Nebula -- A planetary nebula is an astronomical object that usually appears nebulous and disk-like in low-resolution observations. Because of this appearance, similar to the appearance of planets in early observations, the "planetary" adjective was attached and has since been retained for historical consistency. According to current observations and models, planetary nebulae in fact have little to do with planets. Instead, as a small star (less than a few times the mass...

6_56b4148a38a885ae7fa748b6f76fe6032
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Nebula -- in astronomy, observed manifestation of a collection of highly rarefied gas and dust in interstellar space. Prior to the 1960s this term was also applied to bodies later discovered to be galaxies, e.g., the so-called Great Nebula in the constellation Andromeda. In 1864, William Huggins confirmed William Herschel's conclusion that nebulae are not swarms of stars by determining that the spectra of nebulae are made of bright lines characteristic of radiating gases. Diffuse...

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Word of the Day
attercop
  • A spider.
  • Figuratively, a peevish, testy, ill-natured person.
'Attercop' comes from the Old English 'atorcoppe,' where 'atter' means 'poison, venom' and‎ 'cop' means 'spider.' 'Coppa' is a derivative of 'cop,' top, summit, round head, or 'copp,' cup, vessel, which refers to 'the supposed venomous properties of spiders,' says the OED. 'Copp' is still found in the word 'cobweb.'
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