Image of the Day: March 2012

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This Is the Night of the Expanding Star

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA
Thursday, March 1, 2012: Hen 3-1333 represents a planetary nebula, the dying throes of a mid-sized star as its outer layers expand into large, irregular…Read More »

globes of gas. (Planetary nebula were misnamed by the original discoverers, who though the outer layers were planets.) Hen 3-1333’s central star is thought to have a mass of around 60% that of the Sun, with variable brightness that might be caused by a disc of dust that appears almost edge-on from Earth. Astronomers class Hen 3-3333 as a Wolf-Rayet type star, as it is not large enough to count as a full Wolf-Rayet star.

— Tom Chao   Less «
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