Discover the cosmos!
Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is
featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.
2022 February 14
What excites the Heart Nebula?
First, the large emission nebula dubbed
IC 1805 looks, in whole, like a human heart.
Its shape perhaps fitting of the
this heart glows brightly in red light
emitted by its most prominent element:
The red glow and the larger shape are all created by a
small group of stars near the
In the heart of the
Nebula are young stars from the open star cluster
that are eroding away several
picturesque dust pillars with their energetic light and winds.
The open cluster of stars contains a few
bright stars nearly 50 times the mass of our Sun,
many dim stars only a fraction of the mass of our Sun, and an
that was expelled millions of years ago.
The Heart Nebula
is located about 7,500 light years away toward the
mythological Queen of Aethiopia