Beautiful Science

This is an image of the Bubble Nebula taken by Nasa's Hubble Space Telescope. The Bubble Nebula, or NGC 7635, is an enormous bubble being blown into space by a super-hot, massive star - 45 times larger than the Sun. It is seven light years across, ab
PHOTO: NASA

This is an image of the Bubble Nebula taken by Nasa's Hubble Space Telescope.

The Bubble Nebula, or NGC 7635, is an enormous bubble being blown into space by a super-hot, massive star - 45 times larger than the Sun.

It is seven light years across, about 11/2 times the distance from the Sun to its nearest stellar neighbour, Alpha Centauri, and resides 7,100 light years from Earth in the constellation Cassiopeia.

It was discovered in 1787 by Mr William Herschel, a prominent British astronomer.

The different colours seen in the image are due to the heating of gas from the star and interstellar gases to varying temperatures.

The blue light in the bubble near the star is emitted from oxygen, while the yellow is from the combined light of hydrogen and nitrogen.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 29, 2016, with the headline 'Beautiful Science'. Print Edition | Subscribe