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The Most Overwhelming Interstellar Image Ever

Illustration for article titled The Most Overwhelming Interstellar Image Ever

I have seen enough space images. A lot. I admit sometimes I am bored of them. But today's Hubble photo hit me right in my mind:

Hubble Sees a Horsehead of a Different Color Astronomers have used NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to photograph the iconic Horsehead Nebula in a new, infrared light to mark the 23rd anniversary of the famous observatory's launch aboard the space shuttle Discovery on April 24, 1990.

Looking like an apparition rising from whitecaps of interstellar foam, the iconic Horsehead Nebula has graced astronomy books ever since its discovery more than a century ago. The nebula is a favorite target for amateur and professional astronomers. It is shadowy in optical light. It appears transparent and ethereal when seen at infrared wavelengths. The rich tapestry of the Horsehead Nebula pops out against the backdrop of Milky Way stars and distant galaxies that easily are visible in infrared light.

Hubble has been producing ground-breaking science for two decades. During that time, it has benefited from a slew of upgrades from space shuttle missions, including the 2009 addition of a new imaging workhorse, the high-resolution Wide Field Camera 3 that took the new portrait of the Horsehead.


Here is the full photo, you can almost grab that interstellar foam resembles a pink forest troll. I just want to see this in 3d. Or through my naked eyes:

Illustration for article titled The Most Overwhelming Interstellar Image Ever

Image Credit: NASA/ESA/Hubble Heritage Team

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Corpore Metal

The more the detailed our images of the nebula get, the less like a horse it looks.