Astronomy Picture of the Day



Thor's Helmet from CFHT

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#98574 by @ 31.01.2007 00:00 - nach oben -
Thor's Helmet from CFHT


Explanation:
NGC 2359 is a striking emission nebula with an impressive popular name - Thor's
Helmet

Sure, its suggestive winged appearance might lead some to refer
to it as the "duck nebula", but if you were a nebula which name
would you choose?

By any name NGC 2359 is a bubble-like nebula some 30 light-years
across, blown by energetic winds from an extremely
hot star seen near
the center and classified as a Wolf-Rayet star.

Wolf-Rayet stars
are rare massive blue giants which develop
stellar winds
with speeds of millions of kilometers per hour.

Interactions with a nearby large
molecular cloud are thought
to have contributed to this nebula's more complex shape and
curved bow-shock structures.

NGC 2359
is about 15,000 light-years distant toward
the constellation
Canis Major.




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