Photo Credit & Copyright: T.A. Rector/University of Alaska Anchorage, H. Schweiker/WIYN and NOAO/AURA/NSF. CLICK the photo to view full size and see below for info and links.
Alright all, this will more than likely be my final Halloween post so if you’re going trick or treating or taking the kids out in the next couple weeks be safe and I hope you enjoyed a few “spooky” space pics to warm you up!
This majestic bird I like to call the “Ghost of Phoenix” though I’ve never heard it go by an actual given name of any sort due to the fact it’s relatively unknown. Cataloged as vdB 141-south, this object is just above and out of arms reach of the spirits in the Ghost Nebula that I showed you yesterday. It’s not hard to look at this photo and come up with a bird like structure. The fact that it looks as if it had risen, moments ago from its fiery demise……smoke still trailing behind as it screams off into the universe to me, just begs to be called Phoenix.
Again, the reality of what we are looking at is a globule/reflection nebula that is really just fuel for the universe to create newborn stars over time. To me it would be incredible to not just see the Phoenix in space as we do here but to see the star that will someday be born of its material.
NAME: vdB 141 South or as I call it, the “Ghost of Phoenix.”
WHAT IS IT?: Globule and reflection nebula in the Cepheus Flare Molecular Cloud.
HOW FAR AWAY IS IT?: Approximately 1200 light years distant.
HOW BIG IS IT?: Approximately 1 light year across.
WHERE IS IT? (General): Constellation Cepheus as part of the Cepheus Flare Molecular Cloud.
WHERE IS IT? (Exact RA/DEC J2000): I have no exact data for this object but because it’s so close to vdB 141 I will issue the same coordinates: RA 21h 16m 26s / DEC +68° 15′ 37″.
NOAO page for this photo: http://www.noao.edu/image_gallery/html/im1061.html
Travis Rector University of Alaska page for this photo: http://aftar.uaa.alaska.edu/gallery/details.cfm?img=332
Sidney Van Den Burgh (vdB) Catalog: http://www.tvdavisastropics.com/astroimages-1_00008e.htm