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The Splendor of the Orion Nebula (Photos)

Orion Nebula Seen by OmegaCAM

G. Beccari/ESO

The European Southern Observatory's VLT Survey Telescope used its OmegaCAM to capture this detailed view of the Orion Nebula and its collection of young stars. The object is 1,350 light-years from Earth and hosts one of the closest stellar nurseries.

Orion Molecular Cloud: Composite Image

ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), J. Bally; B. Saxton, (NRAO/AUI/NSF)

A composite image of several young stars and remnant streams of gas and dust ejected from the Orion Molecular Cloud 1 following the collision of two protostars 500 years ago. [Full Story: Violent Star Collision Triggers Cosmic Fireworks Display]

Orion nebula stars BN and I

Z. Levy (StScI)/NASA/ESA

The stars labeled "BN" and "I" in the Orion nebula (near the Trapezium Cluster, visible at center) were discovered flying away from each other over the course of decades. Now, researchers have found a third star, labeled "X," fleeing the same point of origin — you can see how "X" changed over time in the second inset box. [Full Story: Young Runaway Stars' Lost Sibling Found]

Orion's Dusty Heart

Miguel Claro

Photographer Miguel Claro captured this view of the Orion Nebula from the Cumeada Observatory in Portugal.

The Orion A molecular cloud from VISTA

ESO/VISION survey

This image from the Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope for Astronomy (VISTA) at ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile is part of the largest infrared high-resolution mosaic of Orion ever created. It includes the Orion A molecular cloud, a massive stellar nursery that lies about 1,350 light-years from Earth.

Highlights from VISTA image of Orion A

ESO/VISION survey

This collection of highlights is taken from a new infrared image of the Orion A molecular cloud from VISTA.

Orion Nebula

Marc Juneau

Astrophotographer Marc Juneau took this picture of the Orion nebula from his backyard in San Pedro de Alcántara on the southern coast of Spain in March 2016. The Orion nebula lies more than 1,300 light-years away in the constellation Orion, just south of Orion's belt. It's bright enough to see with the naked eye, and looks like a star in the middle of Orion's sword.

Orion Nebula in Infrared

ESO/H. Drass et al.

This new view of the Orion Nebula, built from multiple exposures of the HAWK-1 infrared camera on the European Southern Observatory's (ESO) Very Large Telescope in Chile, is the deepest view ever of the region, ESO officials said in a statement. The view revealed 10 times more very faint, low-mass objects (planet-size and brown dwarfs) than previously known.

Orion Nebula in Infrared: Close-Ups

ESO/H. Drass et al.

Close-ups of particular features in the European Southern Observatory's new view of the Orion Nebula, taken with the HAWK-1 infrared camera on the observatory's Very Large Telescope in Chile.

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