Hubble Sees Supersonic Exhaust From Nebula

M2-9 is a striking example of a 'butterfly' or a bipolar planetary nebula. Another more revealing name might be the 'Twin Jet Nebula'. If the nebula is sliced across the star, each side of it appears much like a pair of exhausts from jet engines. Indeed, because of the nebula's shape and the measured velocity of the gas, in excess of 200 miles per second (approx. 322 kilometres per second), astronomers believe that the description as a super-super-sonic jet exhaust is quite apt. Ground-based studies have shown that the nebula's size increases with time, suggesting that the stellar outburst that formed the lobes occurred just 1, 200 years ago.

Credit:

Bruce Balick (University of Washington), Vincent Icke (Leiden University, The Netherlands), Garrelt Mellema (Stockholm University), and NASA/ESA

About the Image

NASA press release
NASA caption
Id:opo9738a
Type:Observation
Release date:17 December 1997, 06:00
Size:2769 x 1540 px

About the Object

Name:M2-9, Twin Jet Nebula
Type:• Milky Way : Nebula : Type : Jet
• X - Nebulae Images/Videos
Distance:2000 light years

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BandTelescope
Optical
Oiii
Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
Nii
Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
Oi
Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2

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