M 16, the “Eagle Nebula” – Ser

Messier 16, the "Eagle Nebula"

Messier 16, the "Eagle Nebula"

Among the most studied nebulae in the sky, the region of the Messier 16, in Serpents, is very spectacular. A young family of stars, the open cluster NGC 6611, is born from the large cloud of interstellar gas and dust we find all around. The former was discovered in 1745-1746 by Philippe Loys de Chéseaux, while in 1764 Charles Messier independently rediscovered it, also reporting the presence of “a faint glow”, suggesting the evidence of the nebula.

It is located at about 7.000 light years from us and its nickname come from its nice shape.

M 16 became very popular in 1995, after some wonderful images from the Hubble Space Telescope, showing the inner, dusty stellar formation regions, nicknamed “Pillars of Creation”.

The image above comes from the average of 15, 120-seconds unfiltered exposures, remotely taking using the PlaneWave 17″ robotic unit part of the Virtual Telescope.


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