Space is pretty.
As the Hubble Space Telescope nears the end of its long-running mission, photo releases like this one are a constant reminder of how much we benefit from having an up-close view of deep space. The beautiful orange ribbon you see above is the remnant of a dead star that exploded in a supernova some 10,000 to 20,000 years ago.
From our perspective here on Earth, the exploded star once resided in the northern constellation of Cygnus, aka The Swan. The photo captures just a piece of the ribbon-like blast wave, situated around 2,400 light-years away.
NASA’s post notes that the full wave “covers an area 36 times larger than the full moon.” For context, Earth is about four times larger than the moon. So it’s a pretty big blast wave! Read more…