Best of AOP - Diffuse Nebulae

M8: Lagoon Nebula Wide

M8, the Lagoon Nebula, is a tremendous star forming region in our galaxy. Under dark skies it is easily seen with the unaided eye just above the "teapot" (spout) asterism of Sagittarius. A view through a small telescope (with the eye) shows the milky glow of nebulosity pervades the entire field. A star cluster, NGC 6530, highlights how star formation is proceeding in this cloud. A few of NGC 6530's stars can been seen in the bottom right of this image, but most of it is just outside the field to the right.

CCD images like this hint at the turbulent activity of the gases in the cloud. As stars form, they create strong stellar winds (and radiation) that heat and churn their surrounding natal material.

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Last Updated: 07-Jun-2014

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About This Image

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106mm Takahashi f/5 refractor

SBIG ST10XME CCD camera with color filter wheel

LRGB color production was used to create this image.

Luminance = RGB (synthetic) binned 1x1

Red = 20 minutes binned 1x1

Green = 20 minutes binned 1x1

Blue = 20 minutes binned 1x1

Minimum credit line: Adam Block/NOAO/AURA/NSF