Astro Images | Ring Nebulae

Browsing the Hubble Legacy Archive, I was intrigued by a small ring shaped nebula NGC 6369. It is also known as the Little Ghost. Discovered by 18th century astronomer Sir William Herschel, it lies over 2000 lt-yrs away in the constellation Ophiucus. The sun-like star at the center explosively blasted away its outer layers creating the ring of glowing gases. The star radiates strongly in ultraviolet causing the glow of the nebula. The blast also reduced the star to a white dwarf. For this color image, I combined three blue, green, and red filtered grey-scale Hubble images. The colors illustrate the presence of ionized oxygen, hydrogen, and nitrogen atoms.

NGC6369 | Hubble Legacy Archive | My Version

Fellow amateur astronomer Roger captured an image of his own recently of a different ring-shaped nebula NGC 7293 in his southern hemisphere sky. It is published here in his blog Cosmic Focus.

Astronomy fans are likely familiar with Messier 57 high in the summer sky of the northern hemisphere. It is another fine example of a ring nebula. Follow the link for a beautiful image and description.

10 thoughts on “Astro Images | Ring Nebulae

    • All the missions provide free public access to data. We have paid for it with our taxes. I really enjoy browsing the sites. Thanks for stopping by.

      • Yes I love looking at the NASA images and of course NASA make these images available to all the citizens of the world live outside the US and haven’t paids any US taxes 🙂 !!

  1. ✔ Thanks very much for linking my site, Jim.

    I like your concept of using data from the Hubble Archive to process images. That’s a pastime that could keep you busy for a few years.

    I can say without a shadow of doubt that planetary nebulae are the most interesting objects but once you get past the nearer/larger ones, it becomes more difficult with my current gear to image those that are only a few arc-seconds in angular diameter. I’m hoping to address that issue soon – without using Hubble….


    • My pleasure. I could process an image a day for the rest of my life and make barely a dent in their number available. 🙂

  2. Great rendition. To see the universe spread out against time and space. To look back and see the beginning and every thing that happened since is a gift. Science is taking over from religion, unfortunately they still have the same margin of error. In other words we still can’t be sure what we are looking at.

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