Orion Nebula

The Great Nebula in Orion, an immense, nearby starbirth region, is probably the most famous of all astronomical nebulas. Can be found with the unaided eye near the easily identifiable belt of three stars in the constellation Orion.   Image ©  R. Villaverde, Hubble Legacy Archive, NASA

Larger image



Also known as M42, the Orion Nebula spans about 40 light years and is located in the same spiral arm of our Galaxy as the Sun.

Here, glowing gas surrounds hot young stars at the edge of an immense interstellar molecular cloud only 1500 light-years away. In the above deep image composite in assigned colors taken by the Hubble Space Telescope wisps and sheets of dust and gas are particularly evident. In addition to housing a bright open cluster of stars known as the Trapezium, the Orion Nebula contains many stellar nurseries. These nurseries contain much hydrogen gas, hot young stars, proplyds, and stellar jets spewing material at high speeds.

Zooming Into The Orion Nebula:



source APOD