Soaring thousands of light years from Earth, the Eagle nebula appears in beautiful display in this night sky photo.
The stunning Eagle nebula, also called M16, lies in the constellation of Serpens about 6,500 light-years away from Earth. A light-year is the distance light travels in one year, or about 6 trillion miles (10 trillion kilometers).
Among the gas and dust, the nebula is a very active star-forming region. These massive stars expel hot gas and fade quite quickly creating the vivid shapes and colors of the nebula. It’s also noted for a 1995 iconic image of what is called the Pillars of Creation, tall star-forming columns inside M16. Because the images we receive on Earth are 6,500 years behind, astronomers have yet to determine whether the Pillars of Creation columns were destroyed in another astronomical event. [Hubble Telescope's Amazing Photos]
To make this image, Snyder used an TMB 130mm scope, with Apogee U8300 camera for color and a Planewave 17 inch with Apogee U16 for luminance, Ha 7 hours, OIII 4.3 hours, SII 6.3 hours, Lum 2 hours, color data upscaled to luminance.
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