Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day we feature a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

October 12, 1995
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HH-47 Star Jet
Credit: NASA, HST, WFPC 2, J. Morse

Explanation: The star masked by a dust cloud at the left of the above photo is expelling an energetic beam of charged particles into interstellar space. This jet, moving from left to right, has burrowed through much interstellar material, and now expands out into the interstellar space. Although jet particles move at nearly three hundred kilometers per second , we still do not see any daily movement because of the enormous distances involved. In fact, the jet is trillions of kilometers long. This stellar jet occurs in a system called HH-47 which is located near the edge of the Gum Nebula.

Tomorrow's picture: Jupiter, Io, and Ganymede's Shadow

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (GMU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA).
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