Headlines > News > Picture of the Day - Rainbow Image of a Dusty Star

Picture of the Day - Rainbow Image of a Dusty Star

Published by Matt on Fri Oct 22, 2010 1:21 pm via: Hubble ESA
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Resembling a rippling pool illuminated by underwater lights, the Egg Nebula offers astronomers a special look at the normally invisible dust shells swaddling an aging star. These dust layers, extending over one-tenth of a light-year from the star, have an onionskin structure that forms concentric rings around the star.

Rainbow Image of a Dusty Star. Credit: NASA/ESA and The Hubble Heritage Team STScI/AURA)

Rainbow Image of a Dusty Star. Credit: NASA/ESA and The Hubble Heritage Team STScI/AURA)

A thicker dust belt, running almost vertically through the image, blocks off light from the central star. Twin beams of light radiate from the hidden star and illuminate the pitch-black dust, like a shining flashlight in a smoky room.

The Egg Nebula is located 3, 000 light-years away in the constellation Cygnus. This image was taken with Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys in September and October 2002.

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