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NGC 246 (Skull Nebula)


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NGC 246
Skull Nebula (どくろ星雲)
Planetary Nebula (惑星状星雲)
Nb PN


別名 (Other names)
PK 118-74.1, Caldwell 56

明るさ (Brightness)
10.9等級

星座 (Constellation)
くじら座 (Cet) (Cetus)


距離 (Distance)
1,600光年 (1,600 light-years)

NGC 246 (Skull Nebula) is a planetary nebula located 1,600 light years from the Earth in the constellation Cetus.

NGC 246 (Skull Nebula) : Picture

NGC 246 and the Dying Star
NGC 246 and the Dying Star
(C) NASA
Appropriately nicknamed "the Skull Nebula", planetary nebula NGC 246 really does surround a dying star some 1,600 light-years away in the constellation Cetus. Expelled over a period of thousands of years, the lovely, intricate nebula is the outer atmosphere of a once sun-like star. The expanding outer atmosphere is interacting with the gas and dust in the interstellar medium, while the star itself, the fainter member of the binary star system seen at the nebula's center, is entering its final phase of evolution, becoming a dense, hot white dwarf. Star and nebula are moving rapidly toward the top of the detailed view, as suggested by the nebula's brighter, upper, leading edge. The sharp image spans just over 2.5 light-years at the estimated distance of NGC 246 and also reveals distant background galaxies, some visible right through the nebula along the bottom.

NGC246 NGC246
NGC 246
(C) NASA
NGC 246
(C) NASA
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