Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hubble Takes A Close-Up View Of A Reflection Nebula In Orion

Date:
March 6, 2000
Source:
Space Telescope Science Institute
Summary:
Just weeks after NASA astronauts repaired the Hubble Space Telescope in December 1999, the Hubble Heritage Project snapped a picture of NGC 1999, a nebula in the constellation Orion. The Heritage astronomers, in collaboration with scientists in Texas and Ireland, used Hubble's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) to obtain the color image.

Just weeks after NASA astronauts repaired the Hubble Space Telescope in December 1999, the Hubble Heritage Project snapped this picture of NGC 1999, a nebula in the constellation Orion. The Heritage astronomers, in collaboration with scientists in Texas and Ireland, used Hubble's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) to obtain the color image.

Related Articles


NGC 1999 is an example of a reflection nebula. Like fog around a street lamp, a reflection nebula shines only because the light from an embedded source illuminates its dust; the nebula does not emit any visible light of its own. NGC 1999 lies close to the famous Orion Nebula, about 1,500 light-years from Earth, in a region of our Milky Way galaxy where new stars are being formed actively. The nebula is famous in astronomical history because the first Herbig-Haro object was discovered immediately adjacent to it (it lies just outside the new Hubble image). Herbig-Haro objects are now known to be jets of gas ejected from very young stars.

The NGC 1999 nebula is illuminated by a bright, recently formed star, visible in the Hubble photo just to the left of center. This star is cataloged as V380 Orionis, and its white color is due to its high surface temperature of about 10,000 degrees Celsius (nearly twice that of our own Sun). Its mass is estimated to be 3.5 times that of the Sun. The star is so young that it is still surrounded by a cloud of material left over from its formation, here seen as the NGC 1999 reflection nebula.

The WFPC2 image of NGC 1999 shows a remarkable jet-black cloud near its center, resembling a letter T tilted on its side, located just to the right and lower right of the bright star. This dark cloud is an example of a "Bok globule," named after the late University of Arizona astronomer Bart Bok. The globule is a cold cloud of gas, molecules, and cosmic dust, which is so dense it blocks all of the light behind it. In the Hubble image, the globule is seen silhouetted against the reflection nebula illuminated by V380 Orionis. Astronomers believe that new stars may be forming inside Bok globules, through the contraction of the dust and molecular gas under their own gravity.

NGC 1999 was discovered some two centuries ago by Sir William Herschel and his sister Caroline, and was cataloged later in the 19th century as object 1999 in the New General Catalogue.

These data were collected in January 2000 by the Hubble Heritage Team with the collaboration of star-formation experts C. Robert O'Dell (Rice University), Thomas P. Ray (Dublin Institute for Advanced Study), and David Corcoran (University of Limerick).

Image Credit: NASA and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI)

NOTE TO EDITORS -- For additional information, please contact: Professor C. R. O'Dell, Rice University, MS 108, PO Box 1892, Houston, Texas 77251-1892, (phone) 713-348-3633, (fax) 713-348-5143, (e-mail) cro@rice.edu or

Professor T.P. Ray, School Of Cosmic Physics, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, 5 Merrion Square, Dublin 2, Ireland, (phone) +353 1 6621333, (fax) +353 1 6621477, (e-mail) tr@cp.dias.ie or

Keith Noll, Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Drive, Baltimore, Md. 21218, (e-mail) noll@stsci.edu.

Image files are available on the Internet at:http://heritage.stsci.eduhttp://oposite.stsci.edu/pubinfo/pr/2000/10 or via links inhttp://oposite.stsci.edu/pubinfo/latest.html andhttp://oposite.stsci.edu/pubinfo/pictures.html

Higher resolution digital versions (300 dpi JPEG and TIFF) are available at:http://oposite.stsci.edu/pubinfo/pr/2000/10/pr-photos.html

STScI press releases and other information are available automatically by sending an Internet electronic mail message to public-request@stsci.edu. Leave the subject line blank. In the body of the message (not the subject line) users should type the word "subscribe" (don't use quotes). The system will respond with a confirmation of the subscription, and users will receive new press releases as they are issued. Please subscribe using the email account with which you would like to receive list messages. To unsubscribe, send mail to public-request@stsci.edu. Leave the subject line blank. Type "unsubscribe" (don't use quotes) in the body of the message. Please unsubscribe using the email account that you used to subscribe to the list.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Space Telescope Science Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Space Telescope Science Institute. "Hubble Takes A Close-Up View Of A Reflection Nebula In Orion." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 March 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000306082320.htm>.
Space Telescope Science Institute. (2000, March 6). Hubble Takes A Close-Up View Of A Reflection Nebula In Orion. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 5, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000306082320.htm
Space Telescope Science Institute. "Hubble Takes A Close-Up View Of A Reflection Nebula In Orion." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/03/000306082320.htm (accessed March 5, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Space & Time News

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

What's Up March 2015

What's Up March 2015

NASA (Mar. 4, 2015) — A total solar eclipse in the North Atlantic and tips to prepare for the next U.S. eclipse. Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: SpaceX Launches Rocket, Satellites on Board

Raw: SpaceX Launches Rocket, Satellites on Board

AP (Mar. 2, 2015) — SpaceX launched it&apos;s 16th Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida on Sunday night. The rocket was carrying two commercial communications satellites. (March 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
NASA EDGE: SMAP Launch

NASA EDGE: SMAP Launch

NASA (Mar. 2, 2015) — Join NASA EDGE as they cover the launch of the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) spacecraft live from Vandenberg Air Force Base.  Special guests include NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden, SMAP Project System Engineer Shawn Goodman and Lt Col Brande Walton and Joseph Sims from the Air Force.  No word on the Co-Host&apos;s whereabouts. Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com
Astronauts Leave Space Station for Third Spacewalk

Astronauts Leave Space Station for Third Spacewalk

Reuters - News Video Online (Mar. 1, 2015) — NASA Commander Barry Wilmore and Flight Engineer Terry Virts perform their third spacewalk in eight days outside the International Space Station. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins