Tarantula Nebula

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Chandra X-ray
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Tarantula Nebula: A large region of star formation about 160,000 light years away in the Large Magellanic Cloud.
(Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/PSU/L.Townsley et al.; Infrared: NASA/JPL/PSU/L.Townsley et al.)

Caption: About 2,400 massive stars in the center of 30 Doradus are producing intense radiation and powerful winds as they blow off material. Multimillion-degree gas detected in X-rays (blue) by the Chandra X-ray Observatory comes from shock fronts formed by these stellar winds and by supernova explosions. This hot gas carves out gigantic bubbles in the surrounding cooler gas and dust shown here in infrared emission from the Spitzer Space Telescope (orange).

Scale: Image is 24 arcmin across (about 1100 light years across)

Chandra X-ray Observatory ACIS Image

CXC operated for NASA by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory