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According to Breaking Science News
The European Southern Observatory (ESO) today released the most detailed image taken so far of a star-forming region called Lupus 3.
Lupus 3 resides approximately 600 light-years away in the constellation Scorpius.
It is part of a larger complex called the Lupus Clouds, which takes its name from the adjacent constellation of Lupus.
The clouds resemble smoke billowing across a background of millions of stars, but in fact these clouds are a dark nebula.
Nebulae are great swathes of gas and dust strung out between the stars, sometimes stretching out over hundreds of light-years.
While many nebulae are spectacularly illuminated by the intense radiation of hot stars, dark nebulae shroud the light of the celestial objects within them.
They are also known as absorption nebulae, because they are made up of cold, dense particles of dust that absorb and scatter light as it passes through the cloud.
Lupus 3 has an irregular form, appearing like a misshapen snake across the sky.
Like most dark nebulae, Lupus 3 is a region of active star formation, primarily composed of proto- and very young stars.
Nearby disturbances can cause denser clumps of the nebula to contract under gravity, becoming hot and pressurized in the process. Eventually, a protostar is born out of the extreme conditions in the core of this collapsing cloud.
The two brilliant stars in the center of this image underwent this very process. Early in their lives, the radiation they emitted was largely blocked by the thick veil of their host nebula, visible only to telescopes at infrared and radio wavelengths.
But as they grew hotter and brighter, their intense radiation and strong stellar winds swept the surrounding areas clear of gas and dust, allowing them to emerge gloriously from their gloomy nursery to shine brightly.
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