Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Astronomy Picture of the Day: 8/19/12 - Eagle Nebula in False Color

This close up, false-color image of the Eagle nebula captures one of its stellar nurseries. The Eagle nebula is about 6,500 light-years from Earth, making it one of our closest stellar nurseries. The XMM-Newton, imaging X-rays, worked in conjunction with Herschel’s far infrared seeing capabilities to capture this stunning image.

Unfortunately, astronomers have found the remnants of a supernova inside the nebula. Many scientists believe the resulting shockwave will eventually destroy these structures, along with the nearby ‘Pillars of Creation’, over the course of the next several hundred years.

Sources & Larger image:

Image Credit: Far-infrared: ESA/Herschel/PACS/SPIRE/Hill, Motte, HOBYS Key Programme Consortium;X-ray: ESA/XMM-Newton/EPIC/XMM-Newton-SOC/Boulanger

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