NASA’s Webb Telescope Captures Ghostly Image of ‘Pillars of Creation’ Looking at this iconic star-forming region in the mid-infrared is like putting cosmic…
There are very few photos captured by Hubble that have become as instantly recognizable as the Webb Telescope Pillars of Creation, which are towering formations made of interstellar gas in the Eagle Nebula. After taking its first pictures of the pillars in 1995, Hubble returned to them in 2014, equipped with more advanced camera technology. Even that image is not capable of competing with the most recent picture taken by the James Webb Telescope (JWST). Webb Telescope reveals never-before-seen details about the Pillars of Creation that scientists believe could contribute to a better understanding of how stars are formed. This degree of precision has never been attained before.
The Eagle Nebula can be found in the constellation Serpens and is located approximately 6,500 light years from Earth. The pillars make up a relatively insignificant portion of the nebula, yet, the tallest of the three is around four light-years in height. This is approximately the distance from the sun to Proxima Centauri, which is the star system that is the closest to us. The formations are made out of cool interstellar gas, which seemed primarily opaque to Hubble during the observations. The infrared NIRCam on the JWST, on the other hand, renders the clouds only partially opaque. As a result, many more stars are observable in the updated image.
In addition to its awe-inspiring features, this region of space is fascinating to scientists because it is a zone in which active star creation is currently taking place. This is known as the Eagle Nebula. When the knots of gas in the nebula has reached a critical density, they will begin to collapse under the pull of gravity, giving rise to the formation of new stars.
Webb Telescope spacecraft captured
The NIRCam sensor aboard Webb Telescope spacecraft captured this image, which reveals newly born stars as brilliant red spots scattered across the clouds. The undulating projections that arise from the pillars are caused by supersonic jets that are occasionally released during the first stages of the life of a young star. Additionally, this is the reason for the red glow that can be seen emanating from excited hydrogen molecules in various spots, like as the top of the middle pillar.
NASA believes that using Webb to study objects like as the Pillars of Creation will assist in updating the theories of the process by which stars are formed. Despite its age, the Hubble space Webb telescope has made significant contributions to the field of astronomy. More than six times as much surface area as Hubble’s primary mirror is included into Webb’s segmented primary mirror, which measures more than 25 square meters. Webb is able to see through the dust and gas that surrounds stars like the ones found in the Eagle Nebula because it operates in the infrared range rather than the visible light spectrum. This is precisely the kind of observation Webb Telescope was designed to make.
The significance of this effort to the field of science cannot be understated; yet, the newly published image will also make an excellent backdrop for your computer or smartphone. You can also get the high-resolution version from NASA, which is perfect for printing on their website. The file is a massive 163 megabytes in size.