The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has captured a striking new photo of the star-forming region AFGL 5180.
AFGL 5180, also known as IRAS 06058+2138 and GAL 188.95+00.89, resides in the constellation of Gemini.
“Nestled amongst the vast clouds of star-forming regions like this one lie potential clues about the formation of our own Solar System,” Hubble astronomers said.
“At the center of the image, a massive star is forming and blasting cavities through the clouds with a pair of powerful jets, extending to the top right and bottom left of the image.”
“Light from this star is mostly escaping and reaching us by illuminating these cavities, like a lighthouse piercing through the storm clouds.”
“Stars are born in dusty environments and although this dust makes for spectacular images, it can prevent astronomers from seeing stars embedded in it.”
The color image of AFGL 5180 was made from separate exposures taken in the near-infrared region of the spectrum with Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3).
Four filters were used to sample various wavelengths.
The color results from assigning different hues to each monochromatic image associated with an individual filter.
“The WFC3 instrument is designed to capture detailed images in both visible and infrared light, meaning that the young stars hidden in vast star-forming regions like AFGL 5180 can be seen much more clearly,” the astronomers said.
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