Star-Forming Region in the Carina Nebula

Star-Forming Region in the Carina Nebula

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Fast Facts
News release ID: STScI-2007-16
Release Date: Apr 24, 2007
Image Use: Copyright
About this image

[Left] - A towering "mountain" of cold hydrogen gas laced with dust is the site of new star formation in the Carina Nebula. The great gas pillar is being eroded by the ultraviolet radiation from the hottest newborn stars in the nebula.

[Right] - A close-up look at the peak of one of these "pillars of creation" reveals unequivocal evidence that stars are being born inside the columns. A pencil-like streamer of gas shoots out in both directions from the pillar and plows into surrounding gas like a fire hose hitting a wall of sand. The jet is being launched from a newly forming star hidden inside the column. A similar jet appears near the bottom of the image. These stellar jets are a common signature of the birth of a new star.

This image is from a mosaic of the Carina Nebula assembled from 48 frames taken with the Hubble Space Telescope's Advanced Camera for Surveys. The Hubble images were taken in the light of neutral hydrogen. Color information was added with data taken at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. Red corresponds to sulfur, green to hydrogen, and blue to oxygen emission.

For more information, contact:

Nathan Smith
University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, Calif.,
(phone) 510-642-6931, (e-mail)

Nolan Walborn
Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, Md.,
(phone) 410-338-4915, (e-mail)

Ray Villard
Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, Md.,
(phone) 410-338-4514), (e-mail)

Lars Lindberg Christensen
ESA/Hubble/ST-ECF, Garching, Germany,
(phone) 49-89-320-06-306, (cell phone) 49-173-38-72-621, (e-mail)

Emission Nebulae, Hubble Heritage, Hubble Telescope, Infographics, Nebulae, Observations


Credit for Hubble Image: NASA, ESA, N. Smith (University of California, Berkeley), and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA);
Credit for CTIO Image: N. Smith (University of California, Berkeley) and NOAO/AURA/NSF