Centre of the Crab Nebula in Taurus

This image is an enlargement of a three colour composite of the well-known Crab Nebula (also known as "Messier 1"), as observed with the FORS2 instrument in imaging mode in the morning of November 10, 1999. It is the remnant of a supernova explosion at a distance of about 6,000 light-years, observed almost 1000 years ago, in the year 1054. It contains a neutron star near its center that spins 30 times per second around its axis. In this picture, the green light is predominantly produced by hydrogen emission from material ejected by the star that exploded. The blue light is predominantly emitted by very high-energy ("relativistic") electrons that spiral in a large-scale magnetic field (so-called synchrotron emission). It is believed that these electrons are continuously accelerated and ejected by the rapidly spinning neutron star at the centre of the nebula and which is the remnant core of the exploded star.

Credit:

ESO

Bookmark and Share

About the Image

Id:eso9948g
Type:Observation
Release date:17 November 1999
Related releases:eso9948
Size:817 x 809 px

About the Object

Name:Crab Nebula, M 1, Messier 1, NGC 1952, Taurus A
Type:• Milky Way : Star : Evolutionary Stage : Neutron Star : Pulsar
• Milky Way : Nebula : Type : Supernova Remnant
• X - Nebulae
Distance:6000 light years
Constellation:Taurus

Image Formats

Large JPEG
197.4 KB
Screensize JPEG
229.1 KB

Wallpapers

1024x768
228.0 KB
1280x1024
330.0 KB
1600x1200
418.0 KB
1920x1200
452.0 KB
2048x1536
583.7 KB

Coordinates

Position (RA):5 34 32.20
Position (Dec):22° 0' 27.79"
Field of view:2.74 x 2.71 arcminutes
Orientation:North is 0.1° right of vertical
View in WorldWide Telescope:
View in WorldWide Telescope

Colours & filters

BandTelescope
Optical
B
Very Large Telescope
FORS2
Optical
R
Very Large Telescope
FORS2
Optical
SII
Very Large Telescope
FORS2

Also see our