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Gas pillars in the Eagle Nebula

Gas pillars in the Eagle Nebula

R590/0097

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Credit

NASA / ESA / STSCI / J.HESTER & P.SCOWEN, ASU / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / ESA / STSCI / J.HESTER & P.SCOWEN, ASU / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Gas pillars in the Eagle Nebula. Hubble Space Telescope image showing dark pillars of dense molecular hydrogen and dust in the Eagle Nebula (M16). Ultraviolet light from young stars (out of frame) evaporates gas from the 1 light-year long pillars, creating the blue halo-like effect. The small protrusions on the pillars contain globules of even denser gas which are embryonic stars; these have been dubbed Evaporating Gaseous Globules, or EGGs. The evaporation of the pillar limits the amount of gas and dust which these embryonic stars can gather. The Eagle Nebula is about 7000 light years from Earth.

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