Image: Siding Spring Observatory reveals stellar nursery

December 10, 2013
Credit: NASA/MSFC/MEO/Bill Cooke

Illuminated by the light of nearby stars, the nebula M-78 exhibits a ghostly appearance in this 10-minute exposure taken with a 6" refractor at the Siding Spring Observatory in Australia.

Located in the constellation of Orion—some1,600 light years from Earth—this reflection nebula is known to contain more than 40 very young stars still in the process of formation.

Explore further: Atacama Pathfinder Experiment: Setting the dark on fire

Related Stories

Atacama Pathfinder Experiment: Setting the dark on fire

January 23, 2013

(—A new image from the Atacama Pathfinder Experiment (APEX) telescope in Chile shows a beautiful view of clouds of cosmic dust in the region of Orion. While these dense interstellar clouds seem dark and obscured ...

Astrophoto: Beautiful new look at the Orion Nebula

March 28, 2013

The enormous cloud of dust and gas that makes up the Orion Nebula is featured in this beautiful astrophoto. This image was a joint effort, with images taken by Gary Gonnella – a regular on our Virtual Star Parties – and ...

Embracing Orion

August 26, 2013

( —This new view of the Orion A star-formation cloud from ESA's Herschel space observatory shows the turbulent region of space that hugs the famous Orion Nebula.

A ghostly trio from Spitzer Space Telescope

October 29, 2013

( —In the spirit of Halloween, scientists are releasing a trio of stellar ghosts caught in infrared light by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. All three spooky structures, called planetary nebulas, are in fact material ...

'Witch Head' brews baby stars

October 31, 2013

( —A witch appears to be screaming out into space in this new image from NASA's Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE. The infrared portrait shows the Witch Head nebula, named after its resemblance to the ...

A fiery drama of star birth and death

November 27, 2013

The Large Magellanic Cloud is one of the closest galaxies to our own. Astronomers have now used the power of ESO's Very Large Telescope to explore one of its lesser known regions. This new image shows clouds of gas and dust ...

Recommended for you

Blue skies, frozen water detected on Pluto

October 8, 2015

Pluto has blue skies and patches of frozen water, according to the latest data out Thursday from NASA's unmanned New Horizons probe, which made a historic flyby of the dwarf planet in July.

Orbiter views Mars surface fractures

October 8, 2015

The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter often takes images of Martian sand dunes to study the mobile soils. These images provide information about erosion and ...

How to prepare for Mars? NASA consults Navy sub force

October 5, 2015

As NASA contemplates a manned voyage to Mars and the effects missions deeper into space could have on astronauts, it's tapping research from another outfit with experience sending people to the deep: the U.S. Navy submarine ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.