A New View of the Helix Nebula

This composite image is a view of the colorful Helix Nebula taken with the Advanced Camera for Surveys aboard NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and the Mosaic II Camera on the 4-meter telescope at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. The object is so large that both telescopes were needed to capture a complete view. The Helix is a planetary nebula, the glowing gaseous envelope expelled by a dying, sun-like star. The Helix resembles a simple doughnut as seen from Earth. But looks can be deceiving. New evidence suggests that the Helix consists of two gaseous disks nearly perpendicular to each other.

Credit:

NASA, ESA, C.R. O'Dell (Vanderbilt University), and M. Meixner, P. McCullough, and G. Bacon ( Space Telescope Science Institute)

About the Image

NASA press release
NASA caption
Id:opo0432d
Type:Observation
Release date:16 December 2004, 16:00
Size:6145 x 6623 px

About the Object

Name:Helix Nebula, NGC 7293
Type:Milky Way : Nebula : Type : Planetary
Distance:700 light years
Constellation:Aquarius
Category:Nebulae

Image Formats

Large JPEG
7.5 MB
Screensize JPEG
138.5 KB

Zoomable


Wallpapers

1024x768
147.1 KB
1280x1024
224.7 KB
1600x1200
325.0 KB
1920x1200
399.5 KB
2048x1536
528.7 KB

Coordinates

Position (RA):22 29 41.92
Position (Dec):-20° 50' 13.29"
Field of view:27.26 x 29.38 arcminutes
Orientation:North is 0.3° left of vertical

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
H-alpha
658 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS
Optical
Oiii
502 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS

Notes: Additional data captured by the Mosaic II Camera on the 4-meter telescope at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO).

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