Universe  ID: 12247

The Bubble Nebula

In 2016, NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope captured a stunning image of perhaps one of the most intriguing objects in our Milky Way galaxy: a massive star trapped inside a bubble. Object NGC 7635, better known as the Bubble Nebula, is located about 7,100 light-years away in the Cassiopeia constellation. Its star burns a million times brighter than our sun and produces powerful gaseous outflows called stellar winds that howl at more than four million miles per hour. Over time, the winds have pushed nearby gas and dust outward, forming a layer around the star that’s denser in some areas than others. Based on the rate the star is expending energy, scientists estimate in 10 to 20 million years it will explode as a supernova. And the bubble will succumb to a common fate: It’ll pop. Explore the videos and images to learn more.

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Story Credits

Travis A. Rector (University of Alaska Anchorage)

Lead Writer:
Alison Takemura (USRA)

Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
Video courtesy of NASA/ESA/Viz 3D Team/STScI/F. Summers, G. Bacon, Z. Levay, L. Frattare and University of Alaska Anchorage/T. Rector, WIYN/H. Schweiker, NOAO/AURA/NSF, NASA/ESA/STScI/AURA/The Hubble Heritage Team
Hubble images courtesy of NASA/ESA/STScI/AURA/The Hubble Heritage Team
Ground telescope image courtesy of NOAO/T. Rector

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