7000 light-years

Made famous by the Hubble Space Telescope, the Eagle Nebula shows all its glory in this image made at Kitt Peak National Observatory in Arizona. Right in the middle are dust columns that became known as the "Pillars of Creation". Here we see they are just part of a larger hollow shell of star formation, with a young star cluster at its centre. The colours represent light given off by glowing hydrogen (green), oxygen (blue) and sulphur (red).

Credit: T.A. Rector / University of Alaska Anchorage and B.A.Wolpa (NOAO / AURA / NSF).

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