A colony of hot, young stars is stirring up the cosmic scene in this new picture from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope. The image shows the Orion nebula, a happening place where stars are born. The young stars dip and peak in brightness due to a variety of reasons. Shifting cold and hot spots on the stars’ surfaces cause brightness levels to change, in addition to surrounding disks of lumpy planet-forming material, which can obstruct starlight. Spitzer is keeping tabs on the young stars, providing data on their changing ways.
The hottest stars in the region, called the Trapezium cluster, are bright spots at center right. Radiation and winds from those stars has sculpted and blown away surrounding dust. The densest parts of the cloud appear dark at center left.
10 Years of Incredible Photos from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope
For 10 years, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope has been helping scientists on Earth learn more about the mysterious objects hiding in our star-studded skies. On August 25, 2003, the telescope, carrying a relatively small, 0.85-meter beryllium mirror, was launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Since then, it’s been trailing the Earth on its orbit around the sun, like NASA’s Kepler spacecraft.
Spitzer stares at the heavens in infrared wavelengths, revealing the cold, distant, and dusty realms of the universe, normally invisible to eyes on Earth. In this gallery, ribbons of dust wind around massive stars, the cavities carved by hot, young stars open up like bottomless caverns, and the spiraling tendrils of a distant galaxy glisten behind a foreground nebula.
Helix Nebula - About 700 light-years away in the constellation Aquarius, the white dwarf star (visible in the very center), is the dead remnant of what was once a star like the sun. The bright red glow immediately around it is probably the dust kicked up by colliding comets that survived the death of their stellar host.
The Wing of the Small Magellanic Cloud - This is a region known as the “Wing” of the Small Magellanic Cloud, one of the Milky Way’s satellite dwarf galaxies. Here, Chandra X-Ray Observatory data are in purple, optical data from the Hubble Space Telescope are shown in red, green and blue, and infrared data from the Spitzer Space Telescope are shown in red.
Zeta Ophiuchi - A giant star zooming through space at 54,000 miles per hour creates a bowshock – ripples that are the result of billowing stellar winds colliding with the dust ahead of it. About 370 light-years away, it is 80,000 times brighter than the sun. It would be one of the brightest stars in the sky, but it’s invisible from Earth obscured by dust and clouds.
M81 - Messier 81, a relatively nearby galaxy that’s just 12 million light-years distant, is a gorgeous spiral located the northern sky in Ursa Major.
Bright Superbubble - Massive stars grow quickly and die young, exploding in radiant supernovae. A large cluster of these hot, young stars will generate stellar winds and shock waves that carve superbubbles into the fabric of their nurseries, like the ones seen here, about 160,000 light-years away in NGC 1929.
Galactic Merger - The cores of two merging galaxies form what appear to be giant blue eyes, peering out from behind a swirling red mask. Galaxies NGC 2207 and IC 2163, located about 140 million light-years from Earth, began merging relatively recently – about 40 million years ago. Eventually, the pair will form a giant cycloptic eye.
“After spending over ten years in a literature club and hearing/reading more poems than I could count, I thought I had seen it all. I have never been so wrong. Love and Space Dust contains so many beautifully written poems that brought tears to my eyes that I didn’t put my Kindle down until I had read every single one of them at least twice.” Amazon.de Customer Review.
“Lovely book.” Amazon.com Customer Review.
“I really enjoy all of the poems. They make you feel like never before. By far some of my favorite poems.” Amazon.com Customer Review.
“LOVED LOVED LOVED THIS!!” Goodreads Review.
“These poems are so full of Pain and Darkness, but so full of Hope and Light.” Amazon.de Customer Review.
“This book is absolutely amazing and i hope there will be more to come!” Amazon.com Customer Review.
“Love this book so much!” Goodreads Review.
“Made me smile and moved me to tears.” Amazon.co.uk Customer Review.
Poems from my anthology, Love and Space Dust. The full book is out now and available as:
This star-forming region is famous for its space pillars that appear in this infrared view from NASA’s Spitzer space telescope. The green dust is the cooler dust and the red dust represents hotter dust that was warmed by the explosion of a massive star 8,000 to 9,000 years ago. Astronomers estimate that the explosions blast wave spread outward and destroyed the eagle nebula’s three famous pillars about 6,000 years about. Since the light from the nebula takes about 7,000 years to reach us we will not witness this destruction for about another 1,000 years.
Sometime it’s so surreal remembering Nicki Minaj voiced Sugilite.
Like here she is, one of the most famous rappers in the world, a household name, probably on her way to tour around the fucking moon because even space dust has heard of her. And somehow Crewninverse called her up like, “Yo we’ve got a violent and aggressive rock we’d love you to voice.” And Nicki’s response to this was “Hell yeah sign me the fuck up.”
a magnificent view of Zodiacal Light – the sunlight scattered by space dust in our Solar System. The triangle of faint glow was pointing at the center of our Milky Way galaxy. - alex cherney
Lake Tyrrel is a special place – the area was once home to Boorong people and the name “Tyrrel” is the Boorong word for sky and space. When there is water in the lake and the night is cloudless and still, the whole night sky can be seen reflected in the water.
The massive star factory known as the Trifid Nebula was captured in all its glory with the Wide-Field Imager camera attached to the MPG/ESO 2.2-metre telescope at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in northern Chile. The nebula is named after the dark dust bands that trisect its glowing heart, the Trifid Nebula is a rare combination of three nebulae types that reveal the fury of freshly formed stars and point to more star birth in the future.
Dark shapes with bright edges are winging their way through dusty NGC 6188 are tens of light-years long. The emission nebula is found near the edge of an otherwise dark large molecular cloud in the southern constellation Ara, about 4,000 light-years away.
A Wide-field view of the Rho Ophiuchi star-forming region in visible light
This wide-field view shows the star-forming region Rho Ophiuchi in the constellation of Ophiuchus (The Serpent Bearer), as seen in visible light. This view was created from images forming part of the Digitized Sky Survey 2.
What this animated GIF is showing is the propagation of light through concentric layers of dust and gas surrounding a distant star. You are not seeing motion from the actual dust or gas; what you’re seeing is a burst of radiance — light itself — traveling through the material surrounding the star.