Astronomy Picture of the Day

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

February 2, 1999
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The Orion Nebula from Subaru
Credit: CISCO, Subaru 8.3-m Telescope, NAOJ

Explanation: The Orion Nebula (M42) shows a host of treasures when viewed in infrared light. Some stars in the Trapezium, an open cluster of stars at the center, are only visible in infrared light. The orange feature above center is called the Kleinman-Low Nebula, and appears greatly affected by newly forming central star IRc2. The blue emission in this representative color photograph is caused by hot gas ionized by the Trapezium stars. This is one of the first photographs ever taken through Japan's new Subaru Telescope.

Tomorrow's picture: Galactic Mushroom Cloud

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
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