Behold: the Horsehead Nebula, just south of the easternmost star of Orion’s Belt, 1,500 light years distant. To wit:

About five light-years “tall”, the dark cloud is cataloged as Barnard 33 and is visible only because its obscuring dust is silhouetted against the glowing red emission nebula IC 434. Stars are forming within the dark cloud. Contrasting blue reflection nebula NGC 2023, surrounding a hot, young star, is at the lower left of the full image. The featured gorgeous colour image combines both narrowband and broadband images recorded using several different telescopes.

Previously: My Lovely Horse

(Image : Mark Hanson & Martin Pugh, SSRO, PROMPT, CTIO, NSF)

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