stellar-nebulae

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E. Burritt - Double Stars, Clusters, Nebulae and Comets, “Atlas Designed to Illustrate Burritt’s Geography of the Heavens”, 1856.

First chart notes important clusters and star systems including the Pleiades, the Perseus cluster, the Andromeda system, and the Polaris system. 
Second chart notes several important comets recorded in the previous 300 years including the Comet of 1689, the Comet of 1744, The Great Comet of 1680, the Great Comet of 1811, Halley’s Cement, the Great Comet of 119 and the Comet of 1843. Also shows several well known nebulaes including the Horse Shoe Nebula, the Spiral Nebula and the Dumb Bell Nebula.

A stellar fingerprint

Showcased at the centre of this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image is an emission-line star known as IRAS 12196-6300.

Located just under 2300 light-years from Earth, this star displays prominent emission lines, meaning that the star’s light, dispersed into a spectrum, shows up as a rainbow of colours marked with a characteristic pattern of dark and bright lines. The characteristics of these lines, when compared to the “fingerprints” left by particular atoms and molecules, can be used to reveal IRAS 12196-6300’s chemical composition.

Under 10 million years old and not yet burning hydrogen at its core, unlike the Sun, this star is still in its infancy. Further evidence of IRAS 12196-6300’s youth is provided by the presence of reflection nebulae. These hazy clouds, pictured floating above and below IRAS 12196-6300, are created when light from a star reflects off a high concentration of nearby dust, such as the dusty material still remaining from IRAS 12196-6300’s formation.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA
Acknowledgement: Judy Schmidt (Geckzilla)