Share

News Release Archive:

News Release 197 of 965

September 16, 2010 09:00 AM (EDT)

News Release Number: STScI-2010-29

Cosmic Ice Sculptures: Dust Pillars in the Carina Nebula

A Hubble Heritage Release

September 16, 2010: Enjoying a frozen treat on a hot summer day can leave a sticky mess as it melts in the Sun and deforms. In the cold vacuum of space, there is no edible ice cream, but there is radiation from massive stars that is carving away at cold molecular clouds, creating bizarre, fantasy-like structures. These one-light-year-tall pillars of cold hydrogen and dust, imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope, are located in the Carina Nebula.

This image is a composite of Hubble observations taken of the Carina Nebula region in 2005 in hydrogen light (light emitted by hydrogen atoms) along with observations taken in oxygen light (light emitted by oxygen atoms) in 2010, both times with Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys. The immense Carina Nebula is an estimated 7,500 light-years away in the southern constellation Carina.

See the rest:

Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Project (STScI/AURA)

Acknowledgment: M. Livio (STScI) and N. Smith (University of California, Berkeley)