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Horsehead Nebula

Horsehead Nebula

R572/0021

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Credit

JERRY LODRIGUSS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JERRY LODRIGUSS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Horsehead Nebula. Optical image of the Horsehead Nebula in the constellation of Orion. North is at centre left. The Horsehead is the small, dark dust cloud silhouetted against the red nebula (IC 434), which lies behind it. The red glow of the nebula comes from hydrogen gas ionised by ultraviolet radiation from the hot star Sigma Orionis (upper right). The brightest star in the photograph is Zeta Orionis, below which is the nebula NGC 2024. The two blue reflection nebulae at the bottom are IC 435 (bottom) and NGC 2023.

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