Capturing Thor’s Helmut

It spans nearly 30 light years of space… and resides approximately 15,000 light-years from Earth. Its heartbeat is an extremely hot giant star thought to be in a brief, pre-supernova stage of evolution. Interactions with a nearby dense, warn and large molecular cloud are what may have contributed to its complex shape and curved bow-shock structure. Step back into mythology and see if you have what it takes to capture “Thor’s Helmut”…

Unlike many nebula, this unusual character is the product of the central Wolf-Rayet star, its stellar winds, and the surrounding interstellar matter. The powerful star emits a high velocity wind, pushing matter ahead of it. This process both compresses and expands its ring-like shell. As it grows, it collects even more gas and dust from the interstellar medium. But how many times and how many events?

via Capturing Thor’s Helmut.


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