Sharpless 132 Nebula

In this image, taken by +Nicolas Kizilian using a William Optics Zenithstar 66 Telescope and a Moravian G2-8300 camera, you can see Sharpless 132 (Sh2-132, LBN 473) , an HII region type emission nebula in the constellation of Cepheus (https://goo.gl/h8tIIA), about 10,400 light-years away from Earth.

The nebula is ionized by a bunch of hot and massive stars with strong ultraviolet radiation, most notably the two Wolf-Rayet stars HD 211564 (https://goo.gl/Rxk8p3) and HD 211853 (https://goo.gl/JadPa2).

The bubble-like structure you can see is most likely caused by stellar winds (https://goo.gl/Z9Sotn) of massive stars.

Visible at the very right side center of the image is the small open cluster (https://goo.gl/fM4XdP) Berkeley 94. In the bottom left you can see the open cluster NGC 7235.

In the top right you can see a small red ring-like feature called Abell 79, most likely a planetary nebula.

What is an emission nebula?

An emission nebula is a cloud of ionized gas (often by ultraviolet radiation from nearby stars) emitting light of various colors, in case of HII mostly reddish-pink (if viewed in natural colors). More information here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emission_nebula
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H_II_region

What is a Wolf-Rayet star?

Wolf-Rayet stars are massive stars that have extremely high surface temperatures of 30,000 K to around 200,000 K. They are also very luminous, some of them several million times more luminous than our Sun, although much of their radiation output is in the ultraviolet part (https://goo.gl/6sMI2) of the spectrum and not the visible part. They blast strong winds of particles out into space while burning up their fuel, lasting only a few hundred thousand years, a short life for a star. More information here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolf%E2%80%93Rayet_star

What is a planetary nebula?

A planetary nebula is an emission nebula (https://goo.gl/QtI28t), it is basically a shell of glowing ionized gas ejected from old red giant stars and driven by the ultraviolet radiation of the resulting young and hot white dwarf (https://goo.gl/HGYVfx). They are short-lived objects, lasting a few tens o
f thousands of years until the white dwarf has cooled down so much that its not putting out enough ultraviolet radiation anymore and the gas no longer gets ionized. More here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planetary_nebula
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_giant

Read more about the different types of nebulae here in this article I wrote for PhotographingSpace:
https://photographingspace.com/what-are-nebulae/

And in case you want to know more about colors in astrophotography, take a look here:
https://photographingspace.com/ap-color/

Image credit: Sharpless 132 +Nicolas Kizilian https://goo.gl/XByRWx Used with permission

If you like this image, you can find Nicolas here on G+ (+Nicolas Kizilian), on Twitter (https://twitter.com/NKizilian) and on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/NicolasKizilian) and see more of his work here on his website: http://www.astropixels.fr

Thank you for your interest in this Astronomy/Astrophysics collection. Maybe add me on Google+ (+Pierre Markuse) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/Pierre_Markuse) or have a look at the Space/Space Technology collection here: https://goo.gl/5KP0wx

#science #astronomy #astrophotograpy #emissionnebula #space #photography #hiiregion #sharpless132 #sh2132 #wolfrayetstar #abell79 #ngc7235 #opencluster
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