Photo Credit & Copyright: ESO/APEX/DSS2/SuperCosmos/Deharveng (LAM)/Zavagno (LAM): CLICK for larger size image and see below for links and information.
Some 4,200 light years away near in the direction of our galactic core, in the constellation Scorpius (The Scorpion) a giant has come to life. This region known as RCW-120 (as well as a few other cataloged names listed below) is an H-II star forming region and emission nebula 10 light years across (59 trillion miles). The star cataloged as CGO 439 is an “O8 V” type star and in fact it’s the largest “O” type star known. Over time this star will become very bright and possibly a prominent member of the southern night sky.
NAME: RCW120 , Sh 2-3, Sharpless 2-3, GUM 58.
WHAT IS IT?: H II star forming region & emission nebula.
HOW FAR AWAY IS IT?: Approximately 4,200 light years distant.
HOW BIG IS IT?: Approximately 10 light years across.
WHERE IS IT? (General): Constellation Scorpius.
WHERE IS IT? (Exact RA/DEC J2000): RA 17h 12m 23.2s / −38° 26′ 51.2”.
European Southern Observatory (ESO) information page for this image: http://www.eso.org/public/news/eso0840/
European Southern Observatory (ESO) image page for this image: http://www.eso.org/public/images/eso0840a/
SIMBAD RCW-120: http://simbad.u-strasbg.fr/simbad/sim-id?Ident=RCW120