Ants in Space?

From ground-based telescopes, the so-called "ant nebula" (Menzel 3, or Mz 3) resembles the head and thorax of a garden-variety ant. This dramatic NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image, showing 10 times more detail, reveals the "ant's" body as a pair of fiery lobes protruding from a dying, Sun-like star.

The Hubble images directly challenge old ideas about the last stages in the lives of stars. By observing Sun-like stars as they approach their deaths, the Hubble Heritage image of Mz 3 - along with pictures of other planetary nebulae - shows that our Sun's fate probably will be more interesting, complex, and striking than astronomers imagined just a few years ago.

Credit:

NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage Team STScI/AURA)

About the Image

Id:heic0101a
Type:Observation
Release date:1 February 2001, 15:00
Related releases:heic0101
Size:1072 x 708 px

About the Object

Name:Ant Nebula, Menzel 3, PN Mz 3
Type:• Milky Way : Nebula : Type : Planetary
• X - Nebulae Images/Videos
Distance:8000 light years
Constellation:Norma

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
Oiii
502 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
H-alpha
656 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
Nii
658 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
Sii
673 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2

Image Formats

Large JPEG
489.5 KB
Screensize JPEG
336.5 KB

Print Layout

Screensize JPEG
239.3 KB

Wallpapers

1024x768
495.9 KB
1280x1024
708.6 KB
1600x1200
937.0 KB
2048x1536
1.3 MB

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