Pillars around Westerlund 2

This image shows an example of the pillars that surround the star cluster Westerlund 2.

These pillars are composed of dense gas and dust are a few light-years tall and point to the central cluster. They are thought to be incubators for new stars. Besides sculpting the gaseous terrain, intense radiation from the most brilliant of the cluster stars is creating a successive generation of baby stars.

This is a section of the new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image of Westerlund 2 and its surroundings, released to celebrate Hubble’s 25th anniversary.

Credit:

NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA), A. Nota (ESA/STScI), and the Westerlund 2 Science Team

About the Image

Id:heic1509e
Type:Observation
Release date:23 April 2015, 15:15
Related releases:heic1509
Size:3000 x 2000 px

About the Object

Name:Westerlund 2
Type:Milky Way : Star : Grouping : Binary
Milky Way : Star : Grouping : Cluster
Milky Way : Nebula : Type : Star Formation
Milky Way : Nebula : Appearance : Emission : H II Region
Distance:20000 light years
Constellation:Carina
Category:Nebulae
Star Clusters

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Coordinates

Position (RA):10 24 23.38
Position (Dec):-57° 45' 45.94"
Field of view:1.86 x 1.24 arcminutes
Orientation:North is 60.3° left of vertical

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