Today’s APOD feature has just left me speechless. What is this astronomical beauty, this celestial rose, this heavenly gate I am staring at in this photo, taken after sunset on September 1, above the cold Chilean highlands?
The star Wolf-Rayet WR124 disintegrates in the constellation Sagitta, 10,900 light years from Earth. The fiery explosive halo is made of "glowing gas globs each typically over 30 times more massive than the Earth being expelled by violent stellar winds." And the incredible thing is that this is not even a supernova.
Nothing says summer quite like a field full of fireflies on a starry night. And this beautiful long-exposure shot, which happened quite by accident, is actually pretty easy to replicate. Here's how:
Perhaps you have seen something similar to this one day, probably when you thought you were hearing a choir of angels and the Apocalypse was about to break loose. They are anticrespuscular rays, and they happen opposite to the Sun.
It looks like a metal marble floating in space. Or the palantír of Orthanc, magically teleported from Middle Earth to 11,000 light years away, in the Cassiopeia constellation. But it's just a visual effect. This is the Bubble Nebula.