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Infant stars are glowing gloriously in this infrared image of the Serpens star-forming region, captured by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
The reddish-pink dots are baby stars deeply embedded in the cosmic cloud of gas and dust that collapsed to create it. A dusty disk of cosmic debris, or "protoplanetary disk," that may eventually form planets, surrounds the infant stars.
Wisps of green throughout the image indicate the presence of carbon rich molecules called, Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs). On Earth, PAHs can be found on charred barbecue grills and in automobile exhaust. Blue specks sprinkled throughout the image are background stars in our Milky Way Galaxy.
The Serpens star-forming region is located approximately 848 light-years away in the Serpens constellation.
The image is a three-channel false-color composite, where emission at 4.5 microns is blue, emission at 8.0 microns is green, and 24 micron emission is red.
Seeing Stars in Serpens
24 October 2006
NASA/JPL-Caltech/L. Cieza (UT Austin)
(Reusing this file)
see http://gallery.spitzer.caltech.edu/Imagegallery/image.php?image_name=sig06-026 High quality tif files also avaliable.
|This file is in the public domain because it was created by NASA. NASA copyright policy states that "NASA material is not protected by copyright unless noted". (See Template:PD-USGov, NASA copyright policy page or JPL Image Use Policy.)
|Orientation of image||1|
|Image resolution in width direction||3000000/10000|
|Image resolution in height direction||3000000/10000|
|Unit of X and Y resolution||2|
|Color space information||65535|
|Exif image width||3000|
|Exif image length||2141|
|Software used||Adobe Photoshop CS2 Macintosh|
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