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NGC 6572 (Planetary Nebula)


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NGC 6572
Planetary Nebula (惑星状星雲)
Nb PN

別名 (Other names)
PK 34+11.1, IRAS 18096+0650, HD 166802

明るさ (Brightness)
8.1等級

星座 (Constellation)
へびつかい座 (Oph) (Ophiuchus)


距離 (Distance)
3,500光年 (3,500 light-years)

NGC 6572 is a planetary nebula located 3,500 light years from the Earth in the constellation Ophiuchus.

NGC 6572 (Planetary Nebula) : Picture

NGC 6572 (Planetary Nebula)
NGC 6572 (Planetary Nebula)
(C) NASA/ESA
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has turned its eagle eye to the planetary nebula NGC 6572, a very bright example of these strange but beautiful objects. Planetary nebulae are created during the late stages of the evolution of certain stars that eject gas into space and emit intense ultraviolet radiation that makes the material glow. This picture of NGC 6572 shows the intricate shapes that can develop as stars exhale their last breaths. Hubble has even imaged the central white dwarf star, the origin of the dazzling nebula, but now a faint, but hot, vestige of its former glory.

NGC 6572 only began to shed its gases a few thousand years ago, so it is a fairly young planetary nebula. As a result the material is still quite concentrated, which explains why it is abnormally bright. The envelope of gas is currently racing out into space at a speed of around 15 kilometres every second and as it becomes more diffuse, it will dim.

NGC 6572 was discovered in 1825 by the German astronomer Friedrich Georg Wilhelm von Struve, who came from a family of distinguished stargazers. The name planetary nebula is left over from the time when the telescopes of early astronomers were not good enough to reveal the true nature of these objects. To many, the discs looked like the outer planets Uranus and Neptune. The application of spectral analysis, later in the 19th century, first revealed that they were glowing gas clouds.

NGC 6572 is magnitude 8.1, easily bright enough to make it an appealing target for amateur astronomers with telescopes. It is located within the large constellation of Ophiuchus and at low magnification it will appear to be just a coloured star, but higher magnification will reveal its shape. Some observers report that NGC 6572 looks blue, while others state that it is green. Colour as seen through the eyepiece is often a matter of interpretation, so you may make your own decision!

NGC 6572 (Planetary Nebula)
NGC 6572 (Planetary Nebula)
(C) NASA/ESA
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