5000 light-years

Located in the constellation of Sagittarius (the archer), the beautiful Trifid Nebula is named for the three huge dark dust lanes that come together at its centre. One of the massive stars there was born approximately 100 000 years ago, making it very young. This image of the Trifid Nebula's central region was taken by the Gemini North 8-meter Telescope on Mauna Kea in Hawaii.

Credit: Gemini Observatory / GMOS Image.

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