Email Print Share
February 7, 2011

Hourglass-shaped Nebula Sharpless 2-106

An optical image of the hourglass-shaped nebula Sharpless 2-106 (Sh2-106), taken using the Gemini North Telescope on Mauna Kea, Hawaii.

Sh2-106, an hourglass-shaped (bipolar) nebula, is a stellar nursery made up of glowing gas and light-scattering dust. The material shrouds a natal, high-mass star thought to be mostly responsible for the hourglass shape of the nebula due to high-speed winds (more than 200 kilometers per second), that eject material from deep within the forming star.

To learn more about this discovery, see the Gemini news story "The Many Colors of Star Birth." (Date of Image: 2009)

Credit: Gemini Observatory/AURA

Images and other media in the National Science Foundation Multimedia Gallery are available for use in print and electronic material by NSF employees, members of the media, university staff, teachers and the general public. All media in the gallery are intended for personal, educational and nonprofit/non-commercial use only.

Images credited to the National Science Foundation, a federal agency, are in the public domain. The images were created by employees of the United States Government as part of their official duties or prepared by contractors as "works for hire" for NSF. You may freely use NSF-credited images and, at your discretion, credit NSF with a "Courtesy: National Science Foundation" notation.

Additional information about general usage can be found in Conditions.

Also Available:
Download the high-resolution TIFF version of the image. (19.6 MB)

Use your mouse to right-click (Mac users may need to Ctrl-click) the link above and choose the option that will save the file or target to your computer.