Ghostly Reflections in the Pleiades
This image shows a dark interstellar cloud ravaged by the passage of Merope, one of the brightest stars in the Pleiades star cluster. Just as a torch beam bounces off the wall of a cave, the star is reflecting light from the surface of pitch-black clouds of cold gas laced with dust. As the nebula approaches Merope, the strong starlight shining on the dust decelerates the dust particles. The nebula is drifting through the cluster at a relative speed of roughly 11 kilometres per second.
The Hubble Space Telescope has caught the eerie, wispy tendrils of a dark interstellar cloud being destroyed by the passage of one of the brightest stars in the Pleiades star cluster. Like a flashlight beam shining off the wall of a cave, the star is reflecting light off the surface of pitch black clouds of cold gas laced with dust. These are called reflection nebulae.
About the Image
|Release date:||6 December 2000, 07:00|
|Size:||645 x 724 px|
About the Object
|Name:||Barnard's Merope Nebula, Pleiades|
|Type:||• Milky Way : Star : Grouping : Cluster|
• Milky Way : Nebula : Appearance : Dark
• Nebulae Images/Videos
|Distance:||450 light years|
Colours & filters
|439 nm||Hubble Space Telescope|
|555 nm||Hubble Space Telescope|
|814 nm||Hubble Space Telescope|