Within the Eagle Nebula IC 4703, a billowing cloud of interstellar gas and dust has entered an active phase of star formation. Open star cluster
M16 is emerging in the upper left corner of this great gaseous and dusty cloud. High energy radiation from these young massive hot stars excites
the hydrogen gas in the surrounding Eagle Nebula to shine by red emission light. The nebula continues to form new stars near the dark central area
of condensation that Hubble photographers have called the "pillars of creation."
The Eagle Nebula and M16 appear 7,000 light years distant, slightly farther away than its neighbor M17, in the summer constellation Serpens.
The image above combined 90 minutes of exposures through a hydrogen alpha filter, with 51 minutes red, 45 minutes green, and 66 minutes blue
exposures. An ST10XME camera, 0.67x AP nosepiece reducer, through a Meade 12" LX200R telescope, was used at the Hidden Lake
This below image, obtained three years earlier, required 95 minutes of luminance exposures combined with RGB exposures of 40,40, and 45
minutes, for a total imaging time of 3 hours 40 minutes. The luminance was obtained with a hydrogen alpha filter. To smooth the image, the
"luminance" was only added at 50% opacity.
Music: Fly Like an Eagle, Steve Miller Band