Planetary Nebula NGC 3918

Studying images of proto-planetary nebulae is important to understanding the process of star death. A star begins to die when it has exhausted its thermonuclear fuel - hydrogen and helium. The star then becomes bright and cool (red giant phase) and swells to several tens of times its normal size. It begins puffing thin shells of gas off into space. These shells become the star's cocoon. In the Hubble images, the shells are the concentric rings seen around each nebula.

Credit:

Robert Rubin (NASA/ESA Ames Research Center), Reginald Dufour and Matt Browning (Rice University), Patrick Harrington (University of Maryland), and NASA/ESA

About the Image

NASA press release
NASA caption
Id:opo9811i
Type:Observation
Release date:19 March 1998, 06:00
Size:750 x 748 px

About the Object

Name:IRAS 11478-5654, NGC 3918
Type:• Milky Way : Nebula : Type : Planetary
• X - Nebulae Images/Videos
Distance:5000 light years

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
V
555 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Infrared
I
814 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2

Image Formats

Large JPEG
258.4 KB
Screensize JPEG
289.3 KB

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