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Monday, August 21, 2006

Messier 8 & Messier 20

M8, or the Lagoon Nebula, along with M20, or the Trifid Nebula are two more of the showpieces of the night sky. M8 is the larger, brighter red cloud of gas and dust in the lower part of this image. It is about 60 by 140 light-years across and lies about 5200 light-years distant. The light you see here started on it's journey around the time the pyramids were being built in Ancient Egypt. The distance to the Trifid is not known, with estimates of 2000 - 9000 light-years. Both nebulae are stellar nurseries, where new stars are being formed.
Canon 20D, 30 minutes, 400mm @ f/5, ISO 400

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