rcw 120

RCW 120

RCW 120 is a nebula found 4,500 light years away in the constellation Scorpius. The ring of ionized gas is about ten light years across.

Bubbles such as RCW 120 are commonly found around O type stars throughout the Milky Way. The expanding bubble of gas in this nebula is causing the surrounding material to collapse, creating dense clumps where new stars may someday form.

Image from ESO, information from ESO and NASA.

RCW 120, an emission nebula in Scorpius
Image Credit: ESO/APEX/DSS2/SuperCosmos/Deharveng(LAM)/Zavagno(LAM)

RCW 120 (also known as Sh2-3 and Gum 58) is an emission nebula, a star-forming (H II) region of about ten light-years across, located some 4,300 light-years away from Earth in the southern constellation of Scorpius (the Scorpion), slightly above the plane of our Milky Way galaxy.