NASA | JPL-Caltech | Spitzer | 2019 Sep 30
This infrared image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows a cloud of gas and dust full of bubbles, which are inflated by wind and radiation from young, massive stars. Each bubble is filled with hundreds to thousands of stars, which form from dense clouds of gas and dust.This cloud of gas and dust is full of bubbles, which are inflated by wind and radiation
from massive young stars. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Milky Way Project
The bubbles are estimated to be 10 to 30 light-years across, based on what astronomers know about them and other cosmic bubbles. However, determining the exact sizes of individual bubbles can be difficult, because their distance from Earth is challenging to measure and objects appear smaller the farther away they are.
Flows of particles emitted by the stars, called stellar winds, as well as the pressure of the light the stars produce, can push the surrounding material outward, sometimes creating a distinct perimeter.
In the annotated image, the yellow circles and ovals outline more than 30 bubbles. Squares indicate bow shocks, red arcs of warm dust formed as winds from fast-moving stars push aside dust grains.
This active region of star formation is located within the Milky Way galaxy, in the constellation Aquila (also known as the Eagle).Black veins running throughout the cloud are regions of especially dense cold dust and gas where even more new stars are likely to form. ...
The colors in this image represent different wavelengths of infrared light. Blue represents a wavelength of light primarily emitted by stars; dust and organic molecules called hydrocarbons appear green, and warm dust that's been heated by stars appears red. ...