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Rosette nebula (NGC 2244), optical image

Rosette nebula (NGC 2244), optical image

R560/0463

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Credit

ADAM BLOCK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ADAM BLOCK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Rosette nebula (NGC 2237), optical image. This emission nebula is known as the Rosette nebula because of its round, flower-like shape. Emission nebulae are composed of gas and dust clouds, which host embryonic stars. They are red because the hydrogen gas within these clouds is ionised by radiation from the hot young stars (open cluster NGC 2244, white/blue) at the nebula's centre, making it emit red light. The Rosette nebula lies approximately 4500 light years from Earth, in the constellation Monoceros.

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