Astronomy Picture of the Day



NGC 7129 and NGC 7142

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#103311 by @ 14.09.2007 00:00 - nach oben -
NGC 7129 and NGC 7142


Explanation:

This alluring
telescopic image looks toward the constellation
Cepheus
and an intriguing visual pairing of dusty
reflection nebula
NGC 7129 (left) and
open star cluster
NGC 7142.

The two appear separated by only half a degree on the sky,
but they actually lie at quite different distances.

In the foreground,
dusty nebula NGC 7129
is about 3,000 light-years distant, while open cluster
NGC 7142 is likely over
6,000 light-years away.

In fact, the pervasive and clumpy foreground dust clouds in
this region redden the light from NGC 7142,
complicating astronomical
studies of the cluster.

Still, NGC 7142 is thought to be an
older open star cluster, while
the bright stars embedded in NGC 7129 are perhaps a million
years young.

The telltale reddish crescent shapes around NGC 7129 are associated with
energetic jets streaming away from newborn stars.

Surprisingly, despite the dust, far off
background galaxies can be
seen in the colorful cosmic vista.




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