F. WINKLER, MIDDLEBURY COLLEGE, MCELS TEAM / NOAO / AURA / NSF / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY F. WINKLER, MIDDLEBURY COLLEGE, MCELS TEAM / NOAO / AURA / NSF / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC). This dwarf galaxy is a satellite galaxy of our Milky Way, lying around 200,000 light years from Earth. It contains numerous bright emission nebulae (pink), clouds of gas that glow pink as the hydrogen gas they contain is ionised by radiation from the hot young stars that formed within them. This image is a mosaic of over 500 individual images taken by the Curtis Schmidt telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, Chile. It was made as part of the Magellanic Clouds Emission Line Survey (MCELS), which studied the interstellar medium.
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