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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Astronomy Picture of the Day

M1: The Crab Nebula from Hubble 

This is the mess that is left when a star explodes. The Crab Nebula, the result of a supernova seen in mysterious filaments.

The filaments are not only tremendously complex, but appear to have less mass than expelled in the original supernova and a higher speed than expected from a free explosion.

The featured image, taken by the Hubble Space Telescope, is presented in three colors chosen for scientific interest.

The Crab Nebula spans about 10 light-years. In the nebula's very center lies a pulsar: a neutron star as massive as the Sun but with only the size of a small town.

The Crab Pulsar rotates about 30 times each second.

See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download
 the highest resolution version available.
Image Credit: NASAESA, J. Hester, A. Loll (ASU)