Hubble captures Horsehead nebula in stunning infrared

About 1,500 light years from Earth, the Horsehead Nebula is a stellar nursery.

(Credit: NASA)

I just rewatched Ridley Scott’s “Prometheus,” and I think the soundtrack’s opening horn melody would go perfectly with this NASA pic.

The Hubble Space Telescope has photographed the Horsehead Nebula in stunning detail. The nebula, about 1,500 light years away in the constellation of Orion, was imaged in infrared wavelengths against the backdrop of the Milky Way.

The pink cast is from hydrogen gas behind the nebula, which is being lit up by Sigma Orionis, a five-star system.

While it looks less like a horse’s head than in some other images in optical light, Hubble’s new shot clearly shows the dark mushrooms of the Orion Molecular Cloud, an incubator for the formation of massive stars.

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