MPIA-HD, BIRKLE, SLAWIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MPIA-HD, BIRKLE, SLAWIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Great Orion Nebula. Optical image of the Great Orion Nebula (M42/M43, white/pink, upper right). North is at top. Above M42/M43 is a reflection nebula (NGC 1977, pink). M42 and M43 are emission nebulae, clouds of gas and dust that glow pink as hydrogen is ionised by hot young stars within them. They are about 1500 light years away in the constellation of Orion.
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