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Thursday, January 27, 2011

ESO's beautiful new image of the Reflection Nebula M78 in Orion

ESO's beautiful new image of the Reflection Nebula M78 in Orion
Click on the image to enlarge

This is a beautiful APOD picture of the reflection nebula M78 in Orion. This image is ESO's winner of its Hidden Treasures 2010 astrophotography competition. The image shows off amazing details within bluish M78 (center) embraced in dark, dusty clouds, along with a smaller reflection nebula in the region, NGC 2071 (top). Yellowish and even more compact, the recently discovered, variable McNeil's Nebula is prominent in the scene below and right of center. This image was based on data from ESO's WFI camera and 2.2-meter telescope at La Silla, Chile. It spans just over 0.5 degrees on the sky. That corresponds to 15 light-years at the estimated distance of M78.
Credit: ESO / Igor Chekalin

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