With a medium-size telescope, this giant cloud makes a good claim to be the finest sight in the sky. It’s a huge object in Orion’s belt. Of course ‘huge’ is one of those words that loses its meaning in astronomy. More precisely, this cloud is about 1350 light-years away and about 25 light-years across. The various brightnesses and colors represent different temperatures, densities, and so forth. Basically, this is a star nursery. The gas in this nebula is gradually condensing into stars. If we had time, it would be interesting to photograph it every million years or so and watch as stars evolve.
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Live data from the solar array at The Old Farmer's Almanac offices in Dublin, NH.