Image: NGC 3576: Glowing gas in the Milky Way

November 4, 2013
Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/Penn State/L.Townsley et al, Optical: ESO/2.2m telescope

A region of glowing gas in the Sagittarius arm of the Milky Way galaxy, NGC 3576 is located about 9,000 light years from Earth.

Such nebulas present a tableau of the drama of the evolution of , from the formation in vast dark clouds, their relatively brief (a few million years) lives, and the eventual destruction in supernova explosions.

The diffuse X-ray data detected by Chandra (blue) are likely due to the winds from young, massive stars that are blowing throughout the nebula.

Optical data from ESO are shown in orange and yellow.

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