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Hubble peers inside a celestial geode September 29, 2005

Posted by jtintle in Deep Space, European Southern Observatory (ESO), Hubble Telescope, Space Fotos.
Credits: ESA/NASA, Yäel Nazé (University of Liège, Belgium) and You-Hua Chu (University of Illinois, Urbana, USA)
Size hi-res: 148 Kb
Related Topics: Astronomy targets

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In this unusual image, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope captures a rare view of the celestial equivalent of a geode – a gas cavity carved by the stellar wind and intense ultraviolet radiation from a young hot star.

Real geodes are handball-sized, hollow rocks that start out as bubbles in volcanic or sedimentary rock. Only when these inconspicuous round rocks are split in half by a geologist, do we get a chance to appreciate the inside of the rock cavity that is lined with crystals. In the case of Hubble’s 35 light-year diameter ‘celestial geode’ the transparency of its bubble-like cavity of interstellar gas and dust reveals the treasures of its interior.

Low resolution version (JPG format) 148 Kb

High resolution version (TIFF format) 1929 Kb

Acknowledgment: This image was created with the help of the ESA/ESO/NASA Photoshop FITS Liberator.

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