A young star takes centre stage

With its helical appearance resembling a snail’s shell, this reflection nebula seems to spiral out from a luminous central star in this new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image.

The star in the centre, known as V1331 Cyg and located in the dark cloud LDN 981 — or, more commonly, Lynds 981 — had previously been defined as a T Tauri star. A T Tauri is a young star — or Young Stellar Object — that is starting to contract to become a main sequence star similar to the Sun.

What makes V1331Cyg special is the fact that we look almost exactly at one of its poles. Usually, the view of a young star is obscured by the dust from the circumstellar disc and the envelope that surround it. However, with V1331Cyg we are actually looking in the exact direction of a jet driven by the star that is clearing the dust and giving us this magnificent view.

This view provides an almost undisturbed view of the star and its immediate surroundings allowing astronomers to study it in greater detail and look for features that might suggest the formation of a very
low-mass object in the outer circumstellar disc.

Credit:

ESA/Hubble, NASA, Karl Stapelfeldt (GSFC), B. Stecklum and A. Choudhary (Thüringer Landessternwarte Tautenburg, Germany)

About the Image

Id:potw1509a
Type:Observation
Release date:2 March 2015, 10:00
Size:716 x 718 px

About the Object

Name:V1331 Cyg
Type:Local Universe : Star : Evolutionary Stage : Young Stellar Object
Local Universe : Star : Type : Variable
Local Universe : Nebula : Appearance : Reflection
Distance:1800 light years
Constellation:Cygnus
Category:Stars

Image Formats

Fullsize Original
1010.6 KB
Large JPEG
188.3 KB
Screensize JPEG
256.1 KB

Zoomable


Wallpapers

1024x768
267.8 KB
1280x1024
388.4 KB
1600x1200
497.1 KB
1920x1200
534.6 KB
2048x1536
689.4 KB

Coordinates

Position (RA):21 1 9.04
Position (Dec):50° 21' 47.24"
Field of view:1.21 x 1.21 arcminutes
Orientation:North is 5.1° left of vertical

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
B
450 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
V
606 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Infrared
I
814 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2

Also see our


Accelerated by CDN77