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M16 (SHO)

M16, the Eagle Nebula doesn’t really need an introduction. The Hubble Space Telescope image of the “Pillars of Creation” captured the collective imagination when it was first shown to the world. The “pillars” are approximately in the center of this image. This telescope lacks Hubble’s amazing detail but has a much wider field of view.

This is 26.5 hours of data in the SHO or Hubble palette in homage to that original image. This region of the sky is so full of gas that there isn’t really a clear spot anywhere. Those spots that are dark are either dusty or have less gas.

The Eagle lies in a dense part of the Milky Way with several well known nebula such as the Lagoon, Swan and Trifid relatively near by. M16 is about 5,700 light years away and has an apparent size approximately equal to the full moon.

For the technical details, see the astrobin link.

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