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What is a Nebula / Different Kinds of Nebula / List of Nebula

Cindy has a strong interest in the world around her. Her interest and research lead to the creation of this article

What is a Nebula?

A nebula is a cloud of dusts and gases (hydrogen, helium and other ionized gases) in outer space. Sometimes, a nebula contains the remains of dead stars. They may also be the location of many stellar nurseries, such as the Eagle Nebula and its “Pillars of Creation” where stars are constantly being formed. In these nebulae, components clump together to form stars.

Note: Nebula can be pluralized as nebulae or nebulas. It is acceptable either way.

Video Explanation of Nebula

In the following video, you will find a comprehensive instructional overview of nebulae. The video includes instruction and a PowerPoint presentation.

Classifications of Nebula:

The word “nebula” is derived from the Latin word meaning "cloud". Nebulae come in various shapes and sizes. Depending upon their characteristics, astronomers divide nebula into various classifications. Continue reading to learn more, or you may click on a link to skip to that classification.

This detail of the Pillars in Trifid Nebula looks very much like a unicorn.

This detail of the Pillars in Trifid Nebula looks very much like a unicorn.

The Horsehead Nebula is an example of an absorption nebula.

The Horsehead Nebula is an example of an absorption nebula.

Absorption Nebula, Dark Nebula

Absorption nebulae, also referred to as dark nebulae, are clouds of dust and gases that are so thick they totally block light from the areas of space behind them. Light is not able to pass through an absorption nebula. They are difficult to spot in a dark area of space because the dark clouds can only be seen when silhouetted by much brighter areas of space.

The Carina Nebula is an example of a diffuse nebula.

The Carina Nebula is an example of a diffuse nebula.

Diffuse Nebula

Diffuse nebulae are nebulae which have no defining shape or boundary. Examples of diffuse nebulae are the Trifid Nebula, Carina Nebula and Tarantula Nebula.

Emission Nebula

Emission nebulae are clouds of hot glowing dust and gases. These nebulae cannot produce their own light and rely upon nearby stars from which they absorb heat. They reach extremely high temperatures which cause them to glow. They are typically located near newly forming stars.

The Helix Nebula is an example of a Planetary Nebula.

The Helix Nebula is an example of a Planetary Nebula.

Planetary Nebula

Planetary nebulae are produced when dead or dying stars eject their outer layers after they have burned-out. These ejected layers of gas move out into space and form a spherical-shaped nebula. The remains of the star from which the nebula was formed can usually be seen glowing in the center of the original nebula. Examples of planetary nebulae are the Helix Nebula, the Egg Nebula, or the Butterfly Nebula.

A planetary Nebula is created as a final phase of a low-mass star’s existence. The Earth’s sun is an example of a low-mass star. When the low-mass star has lost enough material, its temperature rises causing ultraviolet radiation, which ionizes the materials it has thrown off.

The following video contains an amazing discussion of Planetary Nebulae.

While also discussing the Eskimo Nebula, the following video provides a great explanation about how planetary nebulae are formed.

The Egg Nebula is an example of a Protoplanetary Nebula.

The Egg Nebula is an example of a Protoplanetary Nebula.

Protoplanetary Nebula

A Protoplanetary nebula is formed by the rapid creation of a star via stellar evolution. An example of a protoplanetary nebula is the Egg Nebula.

Pleiades Cluster Nebula is an example of a Reflection Nebula.

Pleiades Cluster Nebula is an example of a Reflection Nebula.

Reflection Nebula

A reflection nebula does not have the ability to create its own light. Instead, it relies on the light of nearby stars to reflect off of its cloud of dusts and gases. Reflection nebulae are the brightest when their light (reflection) is generated from new stars being born (stellar nurseries). Sometimes the gas and dust are so thick the new stars are invisible.

Center of the Rosette Nebula

Center of the Rosette Nebula

H II Region Nebula

H II region nebula, such as the Pelican Nebula and the Rosette Nebula, are created when stars collapse upon themselves. H II region nebula include reflection nebula, bright nebula, and diffuse nebula. The amount of gas available in the original cloud determines the size of the nebula. Stellar nurseries, where new stars are formed, are found in these nebulae.

Combined X-Ray and Optical Images of the Crab Nebula

Combined X-Ray and Optical Images of the Crab Nebula

Supernova Remnant Nebula

Supernova remnant nebula, such as the Crab Nebula, are created by the explosion of a supernova. The explosion ejects material, which is then ionized by the energy, while a mass of compressed material remains.

Pillar Detail of Eagle Nebula

Pillar Detail of Eagle Nebula

Nebula Listing

To see a photograph of and to learn more about each nebula listed in alphabetical order below, click on the related hyperlink.

Ant Nebula

Name: Ant Nebula

Also known as Mz3 (Menzel 3)

Type of nebula: young bipolar planetary nebula

In Constellation: Norma

Distance from the earth: located between 3,000 and 6,000 light-years

This nebula received its name because it resembles the head and thorax of an ant.

For more information:

Ant Nebula

Ant Nebula

Watch the following video to see how the Ant Nebula was formed.

Barnard's Loop Nebula

Name: Barnard’s Loop Nebula

Also known as Orion Loop Nebula, Sharpless 276 and SH2-276

Type of nebula: diffuse nebula or supernova remnant

In Constellation: Norma

Distance from the earth: 1600 light-years

Size: approximately 300 light-years across

For more information:

Barnard's Loop Nebula

Barnard's Loop Nebula

Boomerang Nebula

Name: Boomerang Nebula

Also known as the Bow Tie Nebula

Type of nebula: young planetary nebula

In Constellation: Centaurus

Distance from the earth: 5000 light-years

Size: spans approximately 1 light-year

For more information:

The Boomerang Nebula is the coldest known nebula in the Universe.

The Boomerang Nebula, a young planetary nebula, is the coldest object in the Universe.

The Boomerang Nebula, a young planetary nebula, is the coldest object in the Universe.

Bubble Nebula

Name: Bubble Nebula

Also known as NGC 7635, Sharpless 162 and Caldwell 11

Type of nebula: H II region emission nebula

In Constellation: Cassiopeia

Distance from the earth:

Size: ten light-years in diameter

For more information visit:

The "bubble" effect is created by wind that is generated by an enormous young star called SAO 20575.

Butterfly Nebula

Name: Butterfly Nebula

Also known as Bug Nebula, M 2-9, Caldwell 69 and NGC 6302

Type of nebula: Planetary Nebula

In Constellation: Scorpius

Distance from the earth: between 2,100 to 3,500 light-years

Size: 3 light-years across

The extremely hot star, centrally located at the center of this nebula, has an estimated temperature above 200,000 Kelvin or 4,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

For more information visit:

For more images, click here.

Butterfly Nebula

Butterfly Nebula

Carina Nebula

Name: Carina Nebula

Also known as: the Great Nebula in Carina, the Eta Carina Nebula, or NGC 3372

Type of Nebula: diffuse nebula

Distance from Earth: between 6,500 and 10,000 light-years

In Constellation: Carina

Notes: Two of the biggest and brightest stars in our galaxy, HD 93129A and Eta Carinae, are located inside this nebula. Brighter and four times larger than the Orion Nebula.

For more information: click here

This annotated map of the Carina Nebula points out various parts of the nebula.

This annotated map of the Carina Nebula points out various parts of the nebula.

An infrared image of the Carina Nebula.

An infrared image of the Carina Nebula.

A close-up of the central part of the Carina Nebula.

A close-up of the central part of the Carina Nebula.

Carina Nebula

Carina Nebula

The video (below) was created to demonstrate how the Carina Nebula would appear in space if you passed within a few light-years of it. It is a very stunning depiction!

Here is a picture of the Eta Carina nebula surrounded by the Homunculus Nebula. The Eta Carinae is part of the Carina Nebula.

Here is a picture of the Eta Carina nebula surrounded by the Homunculus Nebula. The Eta Carinae is part of the Carina Nebula.

The Mystic Mountain is another part of the Carina Nebula.

The Mystic Mountain is another part of the Carina Nebula.

"The Caterpillar" is part of the Carina Nebula.

"The Caterpillar" is part of the Carina Nebula.

Cat’s Eye Nebula

Name: Cat’s Eye Nebula

Also known as: NGC 6543

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

For more information: click here

This is a composite image using optical images from the Hubble Space Telescope and X-ray data from the Chandra X-ray Observatory in 1995.

This is a composite image using optical images from the Hubble Space Telescope and X-ray data from the Chandra X-ray Observatory in 1995.

The video below is a simulation of the evolution of the Cat's Eye Planetary Nebula.

Cat's Paw Nebula

Name: Cat's Paw Nebula

Also known as: NGC 6334

Distance from Earth: approximately 5500 light years

Size: 50 light years across (a bit larger than a full moon)

Notes: Located close to the heart of the Milky Way galaxy.

For more information: click here

Cat's Paw Nebula

Cat's Paw Nebula

Cave Nebula

Name: Cave Nebula, Sh2-155, Caldwell 9

Also known as: Sh2-155, Caldwell 9

Type of Nebula: part of a larger group of nebulae containing, emission, reflection, and dark nebulae

In Constellation: Cepheus

For more information: click here

Cave Nebula

Cave Nebula

Christmas Tree Cluster Nebula

Name: Christmas Tree Cluster Nebula

Also known as: NGC2264

Type of Nebula: diffuse nebula

Distance from Earth: 2,500 light-years

In Constellation: Monoceros

Notes: Encompasses the Cone Nebula and the Fox Fur Nebula, stellar nursery

For more information: click here

Christmas Tree Cluster Nebula, NGC 2264

Christmas Tree Cluster Nebula, NGC 2264

Cocoon Nebula

Name: Cocoon Nebula

Also Known as: Sh 2-125, Caldwell 19, IC 5146

Type of Nebula: reflection/emission nebula

Distance from Earth: 4,000 light-years

In Constellation: Cygnus

Size: 15 light-years across

For more information: click here

Cocoon Nebula

Cocoon Nebula

Cone Nebula

Name: Cone Nebula

Also known as: NGC 2264

Notes: stellar nursery

For more information: click here

Crab Nebula

Name: Crab Nebula

Type of Nebula: supernova remnant

Notes: remains after a stellar explosion (supernova in 1054)

For more information: click here


Crab Nebula

Crab Nebula

Crescent Nebula

Name: Crescent Nebula

Also known as: Caldwell 27, NGC 6888

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 5000 light years

In Constellation: Cygnus

For more information: click here

Dumbbell Nebula

Name: Dumbbell Nebula

Also known as: NGC 6853, Messier 27, M 27 or Apple Core Nebula

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 1,360 light-years

In Constellation: Vulpecula

Notes: first planetary nebula to ever be discovered

For more information: click here

Dumbbell Nebula

Dumbbell Nebula

Eagle Nebula

Name: Eagle Nebula

Also known as: NGC 6611 or Messier 16

Notes: young nebula, stellar nursery

For more information: click here

The video below of the Eagle Nebula was captured by Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys. This video exhibits just how enormous the cloud of gas and dust that makes up the nebula really is.

The Pillars of Creation, elephant-looking trunks of interstellar gas and dust, are part of the Eagle Nebula.

The Pillars of Creation, elephant-looking trunks of interstellar gas and dust, are part of the Eagle Nebula.

The Pillars of Creation is part of the Eagle Nebula. The Pillars of Creation is the birthplace of many stars. The audio that accompanies the video below is from the radio program, Stardate.

Egg Nebula

Name: Egg Nebula

Also known as: Rotten Egg Nebula, RAGL 2688 or CRL 2688

Type of Nebula: bipolar protoplanetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 3,000 light-years

Size: approximately .6 light-years across

Notes: was discovered early in 1996 by NASA scientists

For more information: click here

Egg Nebula

Egg Nebula

A different view of the Egg Nebula showing the circles or arcs of shed material that this nebula is famous for.

A different view of the Egg Nebula showing the circles or arcs of shed material that this nebula is famous for.

Elephant's Trunk Nebula

Name: Elephant's Trunk Nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 2,400 light-years

In Constellation: Cepheus

Notes: The Elephant's Trunk nebula is a stellar nursery.

For more information: click here

Elephant's Trunk Nebula

Elephant's Trunk Nebula

Elephant's Trunk Nebula

Elephant's Trunk Nebula

Eskimo Nebula

Name: Eskimo Nebula

Also known as: NGC 2392

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

Notes: a very complex structure that is not fully understood by scientists, named after its resemblance of a person's head surrounded by a furry parka hood

For more information: click here

Eskimo Nebula

Eskimo Nebula

Flame Nebula

Name: Flame Nebula

Also known as: NGC 2024

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 1,500 light-years

In Constellation: Orion

Notes: stellar nursery

For more information: click here. This site also contains a wider image of this nebula.

Flame Nebula

Flame Nebula

Fox Fur Nebula

Name: Fox Fur Nebula

Also Known as: NGC 2264

In Constellation: Monoceros

Notes: part of what is generally referred to as the Christmas Tree Cluster Nebula, which also contains the Cone Nebula

For more information: click here

Fox Fur Nebula

Fox Fur Nebula

Another interesting view of the Fox Fur Nebula can be seen here.

Gum Nebula

Name: Gum Nebula

Type of Nebula: largest known emission nebula

Distance from Earth: about 450 light-years

In Constellations: Vela and Puppis

Notes: includes the Vela Supernova Remnant

For more information: click here

Image simulation of the Gum Nebula

Image simulation of the Gum Nebula

Heart Nebula

Name: Heart Nebula, IC 1805

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 7500 light-years

In Constellation: Cassiopeia

For more information: click here

Heart Nebula

Heart Nebula

The Heart Nebula is not the only heart-shaped object in space. In fact, this video shows you 60 astronomical heart-shaped objects in outer space.

Helix Nebula

Name: Helix Nebula

Also known as: Eye of God, God's Eye Nebula, NGC 7293

Type of Nebula: large planetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 700 light-years

In Constellation: Aquarius

For more information: click here

Helix Nebula

Helix Nebula

Below, you'll find an amazing visualization or simulation of the Helix Nebula. It really shows how it looks like an eyeball. Modern pop culture refers to the nebula as the Eye of Sauron.

Horse Head Nebula

Name: Horsehead Nebula

Type of Nebula: dark nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 1500 light-years

In Constellation: Orion

Notes: part of the Orion Molecular Cloud Complex, a stellar nursery

For more information: click here

Horse Head Nebula

Horse Head Nebula

Hourglass Nebula

Name: Hourglass Nebula

Also known as: Engraved, Hourglass Nebula, Etched Hourglass Nebula, MyCn18, God's Eye Nebula

Type of Nebula: a young bi-polar planetary nebula

Distance from Earth: 8,000 light-years

Notes: very young nebula, well-known for the "eye" that is at its center

For more information: click here

Hourglass Nebula

Hourglass Nebula

Key Hole Nebula

Name: Keyhole Nebula

Type of Nebula: a combination of an emission nebula and a dark nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 8000 light-years

Size: approximately 7 light-years across

Notes: part of the Carina Nebula

For more information: click here

To view another image of the Keyhole Nebula as part of the Carina Nebula, click here.

The Keyhole Nebula shown here is part of the Carina Nebula.

The Keyhole Nebula shown here is part of the Carina Nebula.

The Defiant Finger, also known as the Carina Defiant Finger, is part of the Keyhole Nebula.

The Defiant Finger, also known as the Carina Defiant Finger, is part of the Keyhole Nebula.

Here is another video of the Carina Nebula which the Keyhole Nebula is part of.

Kronberger 61 Nebula

Name: Kronberger 61 Nebula

Also know as: the Soccer Ball Nebula

Notes: a recently discovered nebula (2011)

For more information: click here

It's easy to see why the Kronberger 61 Nebula is also known as the Soccer Ball.

It's easy to see why the Kronberger 61 Nebula is also known as the Soccer Ball.

Watch this video to compare sizes of different nebula, and then look at them compared to the Milky Way.

Lagoon Nebula

Name: Lagoon Nebula

Notes: stellar nursery

For more information: click here

The Lagoon Nebula is even faintly visible to the naked eye on dark nights as a small patch of grey in the heart of the Milky Way.

Lagoon Nebula

Lagoon Nebula

Little Ghost Nebula

Name: Little Ghost Nebula

Also known as: NGC 6369

Type of Nebula: a planetary nebula

Distance from Earth: over 2,000 light-years away

In Constellation: Ophiuchus

Size: approximately one light-year across

For more information: click here

Little Ghost Nebula

Little Ghost Nebula

Medusa Nebula

Name: Medusa Nebula

Also known as: Abell 21, Sharpless 2-274

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

In constellation: Gemini

Medusa Nebula

Medusa Nebula

Necklace Nebula

Name: Necklace Nebula

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

Notes: recently discovered in 2005

For more information: click here

Necklace Nebula

Necklace Nebula

North American Nebula

Name: North America Nebula, NGC 7000

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Distance from Earth: about 1,500 light-years

In Constellation: Cygnus

Size: approximately 50 light-years across

Notes: its shape resembles the North American continent including the Gulf of Mexico

For more information: click here

North American Nebula

North American Nebula

Using various combinations of infrared and visible observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and the Digitized Sky Survey, the appearance of the North American nebula drastically changes.

Using various combinations of infrared and visible observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and the Digitized Sky Survey, the appearance of the North American nebula drastically changes.

Omega Nebula

Name: Omega Nebula

Also know as: Swan Nebula, the Checkmark Nebula, the Lobster Nebula the Horseshoe Nebula, Messier 17 and NGC 6618

Type of Nebula: H II region nebula

Distance from Earth: between 5,000 and 6,000 light-years

In Constellation: Sagittarius

Size: approximately 15 light-years in diameter

For more information: click here

Omega Nebula

Omega Nebula

Orion Nebula

Name: Orion Nebula

Also known as: Messier 42, M42, or NGC 1976

Distance from Earth: approximately 1,500 light years

Notes: responsible for the brightest area in the sword of Orion (Hunter constellation), stellar nursery

For more information: click here

Orion Nebula

Orion Nebula

Pelican Nebula

Name: Pelican Nebula, IC 5070, IC 5067

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 2,000 light-years

In Constellation: Cygnus

Size:

Notes: This nebula is slowly changing shape and size because young energetic stars are causing cold gases to heat up which causes an ionization front to gradually move outward

For more information about this nebula, especially another picture with an explanation of how it looks like a pelican, click here.

Pelican Nebula

Pelican Nebula

Take an animated fly through the Pelican Nebula with the following video.

Pencil Nebula

Name: Pencil Nebula

Also known as: NGC 2736

Type of Nebula: supernova remnant

Distance from Earth: approximately 800 light-years

Size: approximately 5 light-years long

For more information: click here

Pencil Nebula

Pencil Nebula

Red Rectangle Nebula

Name: Red Rectangular Nebula, HD 44179

Type of Nebula: protoplanetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 2300 light-years

In Constellation: Monoceros

For more information about this nebula including its shape, color and ladder-like formation, click here.

Red Rectangular Nebula

Red Rectangular Nebula

Red Square Nebula

Name: Red Square Nebula

Type of Nebula: protoplanetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 5,000 light-years

In Constellation: Serpens

Notes: Scientists are not sure how the Red Square Nebula was formed, but it is so symmetrical that a scientist has deemed it as being "almost perfect". It is felt that it may be caused by two conical explosions and if viewed from a different angle may appear to be circular.

For a picture of the Red Square Nebula, click here.

Ring Nebula

Name: Ring Nebula

Also known as: M57 and NGC 6720

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

In Constellation: Lyra

For more information: click here

Ring Nebula

Ring Nebula

In the video below, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the Ring Nebula in a way that it looks like a delicate flower.

Rosette Nebula

Name: Rosette Nebula

Also known as: Caldwell 49

Type of Nebula: large H II Region emission nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 5,200 light-years

In Constellation: Monoceros region of the Milky Way Galaxy

Size: about 130 light-years in diameter

Notes: This nebula is so large it is estimated to be approximately 10,000 times the mass of our sun

For more information: click here

Rosette Nebula

Rosette Nebula

The video below shows gorgeous footage of this nebula.

Seagull Nebula

Name:

Also known as:

Type of nebula:

Distance from earth:

Size:

In constellation:

Seagull Nebula

Seagull Nebula

Seagull Nebula

Seagull Nebula

Spirograph Nebula

Name: Spirograph Nebula

Also known as: IC 418

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 2000 light-years

In Constellation:

Size: small - approximately .1 light-year in diameter

Notes: If you are familiar with the Spirograph, a toy using disks to create intricate geometric patterns, it is easy to see why this nebula was named such.

For more information: click here

Spirograph Nebula

Spirograph Nebula

Sting Ray Nebula

Name: Stingray Nebula

Type of Nebula: the youngest known planetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 18,000 light-years

Notes: The Stingray Nebula is about 130 times the size of our solar system but is extremely small compared to most planetary nebula (about 1/10 the size).

For more information: click here

Sting Ray Nebula

Sting Ray Nebula

Below is a video that compares the sizes of nebulae with the Sting Ray Nebulae being one of the smallest.

Tarantula Nebula

Name: Tarantula Nebula

Also known as: 30 Doradus and NGC 2070

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Notes: a stellar nursery, The Tarantula Nebula is approximately 100 times the size of the Orion Nebula and 450,000 times the size of our sun.

For more information: click here. Lots of great pictures of this nebula can be found at this location.


Tarantula Nebula

Tarantula Nebula

Triangulum Galaxy Nebula

Name: Triangulum Galaxy Nebula

Also known as: NGC 604

Type of Nebula: extremely large emission nebula

Distance from Earth:

In Constellation: Triangulum

Size: nearly 1,500 light-years across

Notes: In the middle of the Triangulum Nebula, there are over 200 hot stars that are 15-60 times larger than the Earth's sun. The heat generated by these stars causes the gases within the nebula to fluoresce.

For more information: click here

Triangulum Galaxy Nebula

Triangulum Galaxy Nebula

Trifid Nebula

Name: Trifid Nebula

Also known as: M20 and NGC 6514

Type of Nebula: it is a combination of an emission nebula, a reflection nebula and a dark nebula

In Constellation: Sagittarius

Notes: stellar nursery; Its name means 'divided into three lobes'.

For more information: click here

A rare combination of three different nebulae, the Trifid Nebula reveals the fury of newly made stars and point to more star births in the future.

A rare combination of three different nebulae, the Trifid Nebula reveals the fury of newly made stars and point to more star births in the future.

Veil Nebula

Name: Veil Nebula

Also known as: Cirrus Nebula, Cygnus Loop, Bridal Veil, NGC 6960, Sh 2-103 and LBN 191

Type of Nebula: large but relatively faint supernova remnant.

Distance from Earth: approximately 1,470 light-years

In Constellation: Cygnus

Size: about 6 times the diameter, or 36 times the area, of the full moon

Notes: can be seen with ordinary binoculars and very dark skies

For more information: click here

Veil Nebula

Veil Nebula

Wizard Nebula

Name: Wizard Nebula

Also known as: NGC 7380

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 7,000 - 8,000 light-years

In Constellation: Cepheus

Size: about 5 times the size of the full moon; approximately 110 light years across

Notes: stellar nursery

For more information: click here

Wizard Nebula

Wizard Nebula

Additional Videos

The videos below have been provided for your enjoyment.

This video provides an interesting size comparison of various nebulae.


For a comprehensive slide show of nebulae photos taken by Hubble, click here.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2011 Cindy Murdoch

Comments: "What is a Nebula? Different Kinds of Nebulae"

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on January 26, 2012:

chamilj - I hope you had a chance to look at the others in this series. Each of them have spectacular pictures and some have videos. Thanks so much for stopping by!

chamilj from Sri Lanka on January 25, 2012:

Interesting I always like to see new things in the space. Thanks for the amazing images. Voted up!

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on December 08, 2011:

jodiejay71 - I am pleased that you found this series to be interesting. There are so many great pictures of nebulas out there that it is hard to pick just one for each nebula. Thanks so much for stopping by!

jodiejay71 on December 08, 2011:

Interesting, Cindy! Your hubs are truly interesting..you know your 'stuff'.

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on December 06, 2011:

J.S.Matthew - I am touched by your words. Thanks you so much.

JS Matthew from Massachusetts, USA on December 06, 2011:

It's my pleasure homesteadbound! I am so happy to watch a Hubber like yourself from the very beginning and look at you now! You are a star! Keep up the great work and success!

JSMatthew~

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on December 05, 2011:

J.S.Matthews - That sounds neat - having access to a telescope to be able to view a nebula.

Too many times those of us close to cities, especially the big cities like Dallas, find ourselves surrounded by light pollution.

Thanks for the encouragement and the compliments. I appreciate it more than you will ever know.

Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment.

JS Matthew from Massachusetts, USA on December 05, 2011:

I enjoy M42, Orion's Nebula. I believe it is the closest nebula to earth but I am not sure. I enjoy looking at it through a small yet powerful telescope on the top of my local college's roof. I first experienced it as a student. I can not see M42 without binoculars. The School has 2 great telescopes and I have enjoyed the experience twice. Dr. David Owen was the Professor. The best viewing in my region is after the Winter Solstice. Sometime between the end of December and the Beginning of February.

I love stargazing but I suffer from a lot of Light Pollution where I live. I live in a small city with many lights. I can't wait to be free again to watch the stars! Thanks homesteadbound for doing what you do. You are the best at what you do. No one can be you. You have a gift!

JSMatthew~

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 30, 2011:

molometer - I'm pleased you enjoyed it! Thanks!

Micheal from United Kingdom on November 29, 2011:

Simply Brilliant.

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 28, 2011:

hello again, Donna! It still has not been released from jail yet, but I will share it as soon as it is published. If I haven't heard anything by the end of tomorrow, I will have to send another email to the nebula keepers! LOL

I am glad that you are able to share this time with your son. It warms my heart!

I just published a hub today on macrophotography that I bet he would enjoy also.

Thanks for the comments and for the votes. i hope y'all enjoy the rest of them!

Donna Cosmato from USA on November 28, 2011:

Thanks for letting us know, homesteadbound. I'll keep an eye on my notifications so I can let him know as soon as it publishes. We ran out of time last night because of bedtime, but we'll try to get part 2 in tonight. Great series and very inventive in your presentation. We voted this up, by the way :)

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 27, 2011:

DonnaCosmato - Because the entries are so similar, I have difficulties getting them past the duplicate filter. Waiting on the last one. It will be coming. I glad your little man enjoyed them. Thanks for the wishes and for stopping by and commenting. I really enjoyed the videos also.

Donna Cosmato from USA on November 27, 2011:

Hi Homesteadbound, we couldn't find the last part of the series so we went back to part one. Zach liked the video of the Helix nebula best, but he also enjoyed the image gallery. (We had to look at it twice, lol!) Excellent research job on these and I hope they bring you lots of traffic and money.

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 21, 2011:

Movie Master - I am pleased to be able to introduce you to some of the wonders of our universe. I think they are so gorgeous. Thanks for stopping by!

Movie Master from United Kingdom on November 21, 2011:

I knew nothing at all about Nebulas, so I have learnt something today, well written and interesting, thank you, best wishes MM

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 20, 2011:

Loi-Renee - Well, I am so glad that I was able to introduce you to these amazing and beautiful parts of the universe.

Thanks for stopping by!

Loi-Renee from Jamaica on November 20, 2011:

Amazing! I didn't know these even existed. I've learnt something today. Thank you.

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 20, 2011:

DzyMsLizzy - I hadn't really thought about astronomy needing lots of math, but I guess it would. That could certainly stop me.

I too have many eclectic interests so you are not alone. You can probably tell though because of all the things that I write about.

My grandmother used to call me the jack of all trades and the master of none. It probably still applies.

How funny about the Carina looking like a brownie. Now I want one. It certainly has a squared off feature there.

Thanks for stopping by!

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 20, 2011:

learntolive - I'm pleased that you enjoyed the article. I'm glad that I got to write it and had the opportunity to go through so many different photos of nebula while looking for just the right one!

Liz Elias from Oakley, CA on November 20, 2011:

Very interestding indeed! Once upon a time, when I was a very young girl, I thought I wanted to be an astronomer. I read and re-read the child's version biography, "Maria Mitchell, Girl Atronomer."

However, as kids do, my career goals shifted a hundred and one times. In the end, I found I had neither the aptitude for nor interest in mathematics required by this field.

My general interest in the topic has remained, adding to my long list of eclectic interests.

Oh, and I must be reading while hungry, as the photo you supplied of the Carina Nebula looks to me not "unformed" at all..but very much like a slice of freshly-baked brownie being lifted from the pan--complete with a bit of walnut on top! ;-)

Cheers...voted up all around. Looking forward to the next in the series.

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 20, 2011:

Chasing Riley - I'm glad you enjoyed it. What a fun subject for you 12 year old to be able to work on. I think these pictures are beautiful also, but some of my favorites are in some of the hubs to follow.

Cindy Murdoch (author) from Texas on November 20, 2011:

Beth Pipe - I'm glad you enjoyed it. I have always been fascinated by space and its beauty.

Thanks for stopping by!

learntolive on November 20, 2011:

It was easy to understand, informative, and the pictures were amazing!

The Evolista from Los Angeles on November 20, 2011:

This is very interesting. My 12 year old had a constellation project recently which included this very subject. Your pictures are beautiful. The dark nebula looks so ominous. Great #1!

Beth Pipe from Cumbria, UK on November 20, 2011:

Wow - what stunning pictures and fascinating information. I love learning more about space - I have NASA and Planets apps on my phone and follow lots of really interesting people on Twitter. Thanks for the hub, I love it!