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Explanation: Staring across interstellar space, the alluring Cat's Eye nebula lies three thousand light-years from Earth. A classic planetary nebula, the Cat's Eye (NGC 6543) represents a final, brief yet glorious phase in the life of a sun-like star. This nebula's dying central star may have produced the simple, outer pattern of dusty concentric shells by shrugging off outer layers in a series of regular convulsions.
But the formation of the beautiful, more complex inner structures is not well understood. Seen so clearly in this sharp Hubble Space Telescope image, the truly cosmic eye is over half a light-year across.
Of course, gazing into the Cat's Eye, astronomers may well be seeing the fate of our sun, destined to enter its own planetary nebula phase of evolution ... in about 5 billion years.
Originally posted by iSeeKEnlightenment8o5
The Universe is sooooooooo fascinating! I love Astronomy.
Whoa so many different versions? Interesting, very interesting.
By far the greatest "version" of the cat's eye nebula:
bebelestrange.tumblr.com...edit on 25-4-2011 by iSeeKEnlightenment8o5 because: (no reason given)