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The Orion Nebula like you've never seen it before

21 Aug 2020, 13:00 UTC
The Orion Nebula like you've never seen it before
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The Orion Nebula is one of the most photographed and intensely studied objects in the sky. The latter because it's the closest large star-forming gas cloud in the sky; hundreds of stars are being born there right now, and thousands of others have already gotten their start form the gas strewn all over this region.

But that explains the former, too. It's so big and close that it's visible to the naked eye as the "star" in Orion's dagger. Even with binoculars you can see it's not a star but a fuzzy patch, and through a small telescope it suddenly becomes a busy region full of gas, dust, and stars.

Of course, when you use Hubble to look at it the view becomes substantially better.

Most times you see the Hubble shot of Orion it's the famous one done in visible light, a ridiculously gorgeous shot showing the entire nebula in multiple hues.

But a recent study of the nebula drilled down into it using just two different colors, both in the infrared. The total observation time spent looking to the cloud was 39 hours, creating a mosaic made of 52 separate pointings of the space telescope.

Image processing wizard ...

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