Hubble Space Telescope captures stunning close-up of Orion Nebula

One of the most beautiful and spectacular parts of the night sky is the Orion constellation.
Baba Tamim
Hubble's new image of the Orion Nebula, and HH 505.
Hubble's new image of the Orion Nebula, and HH 505.

ESA/Hubble & NASA, J. Bally, M. H. Özsaraç 

  • Herbig-Haro object HH 505 is around 1000 light-years from the Earth.
  • HH objects are bright patches of nebulosity associated with newborn stars.
  • The photograph was created with 520 ACS images in five different colors to get the sharpest view ever.

The Hubble telescope has taken a new magical image of the Orion Nebula.

One of the most beautiful and spectacular parts of the night sky is the Orion constellation. The Orion Nebula is one of the Milky Way's most studied and photographed objects and a nest of material where young stars are being formed. Alnitak, Saif, and Rigel are floating in a large, dense cloud of interstellar dust and gas between the stars.

“This celestial cloudscape captured the colorful region surrounding the Herbig-Haro object HH 505,” read the European Space Agency's (ESA) official website.

Herbig–Haro (HH) objects are bright patches of nebulosity associated with newborn stars.

The magnificent cloud is a valuable laboratory for studying star formation because of its close vicinity (1,344 light-years from the Sun). Its size and proximity, which spans 24 light-years, make it visible to the naked eyes, reported ScienceAlert on Sunday.

“This observation was also part of a spellbinding Hubble mosaic of the Orion Nebula, which combined 520 ACS images in five different colors to create the sharpest view ever taken of the region,” ESA documented.

“The Orion Nebula is awash in intense ultraviolet radiation from bright young stars.”

Hubble can clearly see the shockwaves created by the outflows, but this radiation also draws attention to the slower-moving stellar material currents. This enables astronomers to see jets and outflows up close and understand their structures.

Hubble Space Telescope captures stunning close-up of Orion Nebula
Hubble's new image of the Orion Nebula, and HH 505.
ESA/Hubble & NASA, J. Bally, M. H. Özsaraç 

What are Herbig–Haro (HH) objects?

HH objects are created when fast-moving, nearby clouds of gas and dust clash with narrow jets of partly ionized gas expelled by stars at the speed of several hundred kilometers per second.

The objects are frequently observed around a single star, aligned with its rotating axis, in star-forming regions. Although some have been seen several parsecs away, the majority of them are located within around one parsec of the source.

Parsec is a unit of distance used in astronomy, equal to about 3.26 light-years.

These objects, which are bright regions surrounding young stars, are created when stellar winds or jets of gas emitted by these stars collide violently with neighboring gas and dust.

In the case of HH 505, these outflows originate from the star IX Ori, which lies on the outskirts of the Orion Nebula around 1000 light-years from Earth.

The outflows themselves are visible as gracefully curving structures at the top and bottom of this image and are distorted into sinuous curves by their interaction with the large-scale flow of gas and dust from the core of the Orion Nebula.

Some interesting Hubble facts

Hubble has covered a distance equivalent to a trip to Neptune, the furthermost planet in our solar system.

The telescope has peered back into the distant past to more than 13.4 billion light-years from Earth. Since its mission began in 1990, Hubble has made more than 1.3 million observations.

The new wallpaper size image can be downloaded from the Hubble website.

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