CELESTIAL IMAGE CO. / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CELESTIAL IMAGE CO. / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
NGC 1977 reflection nebula. True-colour optical image of the nebula NGC 1977, part of the great Orion Nebula in Orion. This nebula is slightly above the rest of the Orion nebula (M42 & M43), which are here out of frame at the bottom. This nebula is known as a reflection nebula as it does not produce its own light. Instead, the fine dust particles reflect the light of nearby bright stars. Reflection nebulae usually appear blue because blue light is scattered more than red light. The light comes from the stars 42 and 45 Orionis (just below centre). This image was produced by digitally combining photographs taken by the UK Schmidt Telescope in blue and red light.
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