NASA, ESA, STSCI, J. HESTER AND P. SCOWEN (ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY) / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA, ESA, STSCI, J. HESTER AND P. SCOWEN (ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY) / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pillars of Creation 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 one light-year-long pillars, creating the 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, in the constellation Serpens. This iconic image, obtained in 1995, was titled 'Pillars of Creation'. For an updated 2014 version, see image C032/1713.
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