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50 Fabulous Deep-Space Nebula Photos

Fireworks in Nebula NGC 3603

NASA, ESA, R. O'Connell (University of Virginia), F. Paresce (National Institute for Astrophysics, Bologna, Italy), E. Young (Universities Space Research Association/Ames Research Center), the WFC3 Science Oversight Committee, and the Hubble Heritage Team

This nebula, located 20,000 light-years away in the constellation Carina, contains a central cluster of huge, hot stars called NGC 3603. The Hubble Space Telescope image was captured in August 2009 and December 2009 with the Wide Field Camera 3.

Dwarves Shouldn't Play with Fireworks

NASA, ESA, A. Aloisi (STScI/ESA), and The Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration

Nearly 12.5 million light-years away in the dwarf galaxy NGC 4449 stellar "fireworks" are going off all the time. The image was taken in November 2005 with Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys.

Nebula Dominated by Cosmic Superbubble

ESO/Manu Mejias

The European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope was used to obtain this view of the nebula LHA 120-N 44 surrounding the star cluster NGC 1929. Lying within the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy of our own Milky Way, this region of star formation features a colossal superbubble of material expanding outwards due to the influence of the cluster of young stars at its heart that sculpts the interstellar landscape and drives forward the nebula’s evolution.

Gemini Observatory Image of Kronberger 61 Nebula

Gemini Observatory/AURA

This Gemini Observatory image of Kronberger 61 shows the ionized shell of expelled gas resembling a soccer ball. The light of the nebula here is primarily due to emission from twice-ionized oxygen, and its central star can be seen as the slightly bluer star very close to the center of the nebula.

Skulls, Tornadoes and Insects - The Bizarre Sightings of Modern Astronomy

Gemini South GMOS/Travis Rector/U. of Alaska Anchorage

A Gemini South image of the planetary nebula NGC 246, or "Skull Nebula."

Ghost-Like Nebula Revealed in Haunting Space Photo

NASA, ESA, Hubble, R. Sahai (JPL) [Full Story]

The ghost-like nebula, IRAS 05437+2502, includes a small star-forming region filled with dark dust that was first noted in images taken by the IRAS satellite in infrared light in 1983. This recently released image from the Hubble Space Telescope shows many new details, but has not uncovered a clear cause of the bright sharp arc.

New Photo Reveals Cosmic Unicorn's Heart

ESO/J. Emerson/VISTA [Full Story]

This dramatic infrared image shows the nearby star formation region Monoceros R2, located some 2,700 light-years away in the constellation of Monoceros (the Unicorn). The picture was created from exposures taken by the VISTA survey telescope at ESO's Paranal Observatory.

Orion Nebula

ESO and Igor Chekalin

This new image of the Orion Nebula was captured using the Wide Field Imager camera on the MPG/ESO 2.2-meter telescope at the La Silla Observatory in Chile.

Tarantula Nebula

NASA/ESA

Hubble has taken this stunning close-up shot of part of the Tarantula Nebula. This star-forming region of ionised hydrogen gas is in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a small galaxy which neighbours the Milky Way.

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