Astronomy Picture of the Day



The Tulip in the Swan

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#100933 by @ 25.05.2007 00:00 - nach oben -
The Tulip in the Swan


Explanation:

This expansive (1-degree wide)
telescopic
view
looks out along the
plane of our Milky Way Galaxy toward the
nebula rich constellation
Cygnus
the Swan
.

It is centered on a bright hydrogen emission region
recorded in the
1959 catalog
by astronomer Stewart Sharpless
as Sh2-101.

About 8,000 light-years distant the nebula is popularly known
as the Tulip Nebula, understandably not the only
cosmic cloud to evoke the imagery
of flowers.

Complex and beautiful in visible light, the area also includes
one of the brightest, most famous sources in the
x-ray
sky
, Cygnus X-1.

Discovered in the early 1970s,
Cygnus
X-1
is a bizarre
binary system consisting of a massive, hot, supergiant star
(seen here)
in close orbit with a stellar mass
black hole.

The Cygnus
X-1
system is also estimated to lie a
comfortable
8,000 light-years away.


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