A horse-shaped nebula gets its close-up in new photos by NASA's Webb telescope

DALLAS (AP) — NASA’s Webb Space Telescope has revealed the sharpest images yet of a portion of a horse-shaped nebula, showing the “mane” in finer detail.

The Horsehead Nebula, in the constellation Orion, is 1,300 light-years away. A light-year is nearly 6 trillion miles (9.7 trillion kilometers).

Discovered over a century ago, its nickname derives from its striking appearance — a wispy pillar of gas and dust that resembles a horse rearing its head.

Webb’s latest infrared images released Monday captured the top of Horsehead in greater detail, illuminating clouds of chilly hydrogen molecules and soot-like chemicals. These glamour shots can help refine astronomers’ understanding of the nebula, which acts as a nursery for big stars to brew.

Horsehead is a favorite target of space observatories including the Hubble Space Telescope. Last year, the European space telescope Euclid took fresh photos of the nebula.


The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Science and Educational Media Group. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top