Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Celestial Beauty

This NASA image shows the planetary nebula NGC 6543, as seen during the first systematic survey of such objects in the solar neighborhood made with NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory. A planetary nebula is a phase of stellar evolution that the sun should experience several billion years from now, when it expands to become a red giant and then sheds most of its outer layers, leaving behind a hot core that contracts to form a dense white dwarf star.

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