NASA / CXC / CFA / JPL / S. WOLK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / CXC / CFA / JPL / S. WOLK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
NGC 281 starbirth region, composite image. Also called the Pacman Nebula, this is a region of active star formation 9200 light years from Earth in the constellation Cassiopeia. This composite image combines data in X-ray (from the Chandra X-ray Observatory; purple) and infrared (from the Spitzer Space Telescope; red, green and blue). This image is 48 light years across, and is dominated by a cluster of X-ray emitting high-mass stars, ones that contain eight times the Sun's mass or more. Powerful stellar winds from these stars has shaped the gas and dust of the surrounding nebulae. Observations made in 2011.
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