Astronomy Picture of the Day



Swirls and Stars in IC 4678

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#74004 by @ 25.05.2005 00:00 - nach oben -
Swirls and Stars in IC 4678


Explanation:
Swirls of gas and dust enrich this little observed
starfield toward the
constellation of Sagittarius.

Just to the side of the
more often photographed Lagoon Nebula
(M8)
and the Trifid Nebula
(M20)
lies this busy patch of sky dubbed IC 4678.

Prominent in the
above image are large
emission nebulas of red glowing gas highlighted by
unusually bright red filaments.

On the left, a band of thin dust
preferentially reflects the blue light of a bright star
creating a small reflection nebula.

On the right and across the bottom, swaths of
thicker dust appear as
dark absorption nebulas, blocking the light from stars
farther in the distance.

IC 4678 spans about 25
light years and lies about 5,000 light years distant.




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