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VISTA Telescope Captures The Stunning Details Of Orion A Molecular Cloud

First Posted: Jan 05, 2017 03:20 AM EST
Orion Nebula
VISTA telescope spotted the spectacular Orion A molecular cloud, in which it could aid in understanding the star and cluster formation. (Image for representation only. Please see the actual image below in the video.)
(Photo : NASA/Handout/Getty Images)

The astronomers captured an image of the spectacular details of the Orion A molecular cloud using the VISTA infrared survey telescope at ESO's Paranal Observatory in northern Chile. Orion A molecular cloud is the nearest known massive star factory that is about 1,350 lightyears from planet Earth.

Orion A is a dense region filled with cosmic gas and dust. It blocks the view of the newly born baby stars that are buried inside the dusty clouds. It is located about 8 degrees south of Orion's sword in the constellation Orion the Hunter.

The astronomers discovered about 800,000 celestial objects including the stars and protostars using the VISTA telescope. This infrared telescope can see things in space that are hard to perceive by the human eye and other optical telescopes. The team also discovered five new protostar candidates, which are the freshly forming stars-to-be, in the stellar nursery, according to Space.com.

In the new image, it shows the star formation processes in Orion A. Towards the left of the image is the Orion Nebula also known as Messier 42. This part shapes the sword of the famous bright constellation of Orion. The image also indicates the discs of material that could give birth to new stars or the pre-stellar discs and the nebulosity that is associated with newly born stars. The smaller star clusters and galaxy clusters lying far beyond the Milky Way could also be perceived.

The detailed image of the Orion A captured by the astronomers could be used for further studies of star and cluster formation. It also brings the best part of VISTA telescope to capture images in space quickly, according to Phys.org. 

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