ESA / HUBBLE (M. KORNMESSER) / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ESA / HUBBLE (M. KORNMESSER) / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
This animation illustrates the way proplyds form within nebulae. The bright proplyds, or ionized protoplanetary disks, are illuminated here by the star Theta 1 Orionis C, which sets the disc material ablaze. The powerful radiation that lights them up also threatens their very existence, as the disk material, once heated up, is very likely to dissipate and dissolve before planets can form. Nearly 180 proplyds have been discovered in the Orion Nebula.
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