Nebulae: The Sagittarius Triplet

Decent Essays
A Sagittarius Triplet

A nebulae as described in Fraknoi’s Voyages to the Stars and Galaxies is “all objects that were not sharp points of light” (Fraknoi, page 384). The Sagittarius Triplet is a group of three nebulae’s famous for their bright red and blue hues, which is a main reason I choose this picture. There are three nebulae in this picture and each is spectacular on its own but together the Sagittarius Triplet creates a visual buffet for the eyes. The dark reds in particular are beautiful to behold and take up the majority of the visual landscape. These red colors are created by the emission nebulae by hydrogen gas that is heated by the intense temperatures of present stars. The image made me feel the vastness of space and the endlessness of time. The interesting layout of the nebulae creates a long stardust highway across the image, connecting the NGC 6559 and M8 nebulae. These three nebulae are so bright they are routinely featured in telescopic tours of the Sagittarius constellation and the central Milky Way galaxy. M8 or the Lagoon Nebula and M20 or Trifid were first cataloged in 1764 by Charles Messier (Kronberg).
The Trifid Nebula, M20, (at the upper right in the image) is a “rare combination of an emission and reflection nebula” (Koprolin). This colorful contrasting nebulae is 5,000 light-years from Earth and 40 light-years across. A star forming region in the plane of our galaxy, the Trifid illustrates three different types of astronomical nebulae; red
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