Incredible photos from refurbished Hubble telescope

September 10, 2009 | By | Reply More

This is really a treat. Go to this link and see ten photos taken by the recently refurbished Hubble telescope, along with detailed commentary. The image below is one of the ten. It depicts the  “Butterfly Nebula.” The inset photo is of barred spiral galaxy NGC 6217.

Image by NASA (public domain)

Image by NASA (public domain)

Here’s the description of the above photo, from NASA:

A dying star that was once about five times the mass of the Sun is at the center of this fury. It has ejected its envelope of gases and is now unleashing a stream of ultraviolet radiation that is making the cast-off material glow. NGC 6302 lies within our Milky Way galaxy, roughly 3,800 light-years away in the constellation Scorpius. The glowing gas is the star’s outer layers, expelled over about 2,200 years. The “butterfly” stretches for more than two light-years, which is about half the distance from the Sun to the nearest star, Alpha Centauri. The central star itself cannot be seen, because it is hidden within a doughnut-shaped ring of dust, which appears as a dark band pinching the nebula in the center.

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Category: Astronomy, photography

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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