How many nebulas do you think are in this photo? Careful, the answer is not quite what it seems.
Look deeply into this glowing red cloud drifting beyond the edges of our galaxy. Pretty weird, right? The weirdest thing of all, though, is what it’s been hiding.
The Orion Nebula has taught astronomers a great deal about how stars are born and how planetary systems form.
The Hubble Space Telescope took a new image of the Veil Nebula, a supernova remnant from a star that exploded 8,000 years ago, and made this truly spectacular flyover visualization of the beautiful ripple in space that you can see below. In the 3D visualization, red is sulfur, green is hydrogen and blue is oxygen.
This giant cosmic bubble may seem an unusual sight, but in fact it’s pretty common across the Universe—because its the remnants of a dying star, otherwise known as a planetary nebula.
If space traveling the universe had a scenic route, this would be it. It’s a 3D fly-through of the nebula Gum 29 with the stunning star cluster Westerlund 2 in the middle and it’s absolutely gorgeous. The image was taken by the Hubble and shown off for its 25th anniversary. It’s the stuff of dreams.
The Monkey Roars! NASA just released this beautiful mosaic image of part of the Monkey Head Nebula, showing a cloud made up of ultraviolet light hitting cooler hydrogen gas. This image is partly visible light and partly infrared, which shows interstellar dust particles heated by radiation from the stars in the middle.
The Universe is an incredible place that defies belief. We take it for granted because the distances and scale is so alien to our little tiny pale blue dot that our brains can't even process them. Maybe that's why Italian artist St. Tesla turns galaxies and nebulae into tiny precious jewels.
The European Southern Observatory has published a new Very Large Telescope photo of the cometary globule CG4 or, like they call it, The Mouth of the Beast. As the ESO says, as with other cometary globules, "the exact nature of CG4 remains a mystery."
We loved Karen Gillain's take on Nebula in Guardians of the Galaxy - if only there was more of it. But while it might be a while until we see more of her, at least now we're getting some Nebula merchandise, in the shape of a new Funko Pop! Vinyl.
Straight from Karen Gillan's criminally underutilized Vimeo page, here's a minute-long clip of the actress chopping off all her hair for her turn as Nebula in Guardians of the Galaxy.
The European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope in Chile has captured this stunning image of planetary nebula that, by chance, is aligned with a foreground star, and thus bears an uncanny resemblance to a diamond ring. This cosmic gem is unusually symmetrical, appearing to be almost perfectly circular.
The remnant of an aging star and a strikingly bright newcomer form this amazing cosmic engagement jewelery, brought to you by the European Southern Observatory (ESO) today:
I love Janet Echelman's floating alien sculptures. I want them to be everywhere, like otherworldly guardians of the night. Urban skies—devoid of stars thanks to light pollution—are a lot more beautiful with these stunning nebulae in them.
This was seen from the International Space Station. But this is not an interstellar cloud formation. It is here on Earth. You won't believe your eyes when clicking on the much larger version:
That's how the good people at NASA's Astronomy Photo of the Day describe this dust pillar, at any rate, and I know better than to argue with a bunch of astronomers armed with a flair for figurative language. And this gorgeous gas is just one small part of the generally just ridiculously impressive Eagle Nebula.
This star is RS Puppis, and it isn't just the stellar equivalent of a pretty face; it's absolutely crucial to our understanding of the universe. This is a Cepheid variable star, which in part means its brightness increases and decreases on an exact, predictable schedule. And because it's surrounded by a giant nebula…
There's nothing gentle or delicate about this butterfly. Despite its pleasant appearance, the Butterfly Nebula has a dying star at its center that has a temperature of 250,000 degrees C.
It's not often that a nebula looks quite so much like a cheesy special effect from some forgotten '70s sci-fi movie, but the Red Rectangle Nebula qualifies. After all, this seems to betray a total misunderstanding of basic science, because aren't nebulae meant to be, well, round? And is any nebula that blood-red?