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December Friday 09, 2016 at 14:35
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South of Antares , in the tail ofthe nebula-rich constellation Scorpius ,lies emission nebula IC 4628.Nearby hot, massive stars , millions of years young, irradiate thenebula with invisible ultraviolet light, stripping electronsfrom atoms.The electrons eventually recombine with the atoms to produce thevisible nebular glow,dominated by the red emission of hydrogen.At an estimated distance of 6,000 light-years, the region shown is about 250 light-years across, spanning over three full moons on the sky .The nebula is also cataloged as Gum 56 for Australian astronomer Colin Stanley Gum ,but seafood-loving astronomers mightknow this cosmic cloud as the Prawn Nebula. The tantalizing color image is a new astronomical composition using datafrom the European Southern Observatory's wide field OmegCAM andamateur images made under dark skies on the Canary Island of Tenerife.


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