A Glowing Red Nebula and Uranus Seen Through Saturn’s Rings

Image Credit: ESO

The European Southern Observatory at La Silla released this image of a glowing hydrogen cloud, or nebula, Gum 41. The glow is caused by the searing radiation emitted by young, very hot stars which excites the hydrogen gas left over from star formation.

This nebula is in the constellation Centaurus in the southern sky, approximately 7,300 light years away.

According to ESO, GUM 41 is actually quite faint, and the image was aided by the use of a filter to pick out the red glow against the background of space.

Much closer to home, there was this, Uranus as seen from the Cassini spacecraft orbiting Saturn


From the JPL story:

“When this view was obtained, Uranus was nearly on the opposite side of the sun as seen from Saturn, at a distance of approximately 28.6 astronomical units from Cassini and Saturn. An astronomical unit is the average distance from Earth to the sun, equal to 93 million miles (150 million kilometers). At their closest – once during each Saturn orbit of nearly 30 years – the two planets approach to within about 10 astronomical units of each other.”

A rather beautiful galaxy we’ve got here.

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