ad info

CNN.com
 MAIN PAGE
 WORLD
 ASIANOW
 U.S.
 LOCAL
 POLITICS
 WEATHER
 BUSINESS
 SPORTS
 TECHNOLOGY
   computing
   personal technology
   space
 NATURE
 ENTERTAINMENT
 BOOKS
 TRAVEL
 FOOD
 HEALTH
 STYLE
 IN-DEPTH

 Headline News brief
 daily almanac
 CNN networks
 CNN programs
 on-air transcripts
 news quiz

  CNN WEB SITES:
CNN Websites
 TIME INC. SITES:
 MORE SERVICES:
 video on demand
 video archive
 audio on demand
 news email services
 free email accounts
 desktop headlines
 pointcast
 pagenet

 DISCUSSION:
 message boards
 chat
 feedback

 SITE GUIDES:
 help
 contents
 search

 FASTER ACCESS:
 europe
 japan

 WEB SERVICES:
Space

Hubble views aging stars inside brilliant cluster

star cluster
At the center of the most violent starburst region in the local universe lies a cluster of brilliant, massive stars, known to astronomers as Hodge 301 (lower right hand corner of this photo)   

April 2, 1999
Web posted at: 10:48 a.m. EST (1548 GMT)

(CNN) -- The Hubble Space Telescope institute this week released an image showing a cluster of brilliant, massive stars known to astronomers as Hodge 301.

Hodge 301, seen in the lower right hand corner of the image, lives inside the Tarantula Nebula, part of our nearest galactic neighbor, the Large Magellanic Cloud, according to the institute.

The star cluster is not the brightest, or youngest, or most populous star cluster in the Tarantula Nebula -- that honor goes to the spectacular R136. In fact, Hodge 301 is almost 10 times older than the young cluster R136, the institute said in a statement.

But many of the stars in Hodge 301 are so old that they have exploded as supernovae. These exploded stars are blasting material out into the surrounding region at speeds of almost 300 miles per second.

This high speed ejecta is plowing into the surrounding Tarantula Nebula, shocking and pressing the gas into a multitude of sheets and filaments, seen in the upper left portion of the picture.

Hodge 301 contains three so-called red supergiants -- stars that are close to the end of their evolution and are about to go supernovae, exploding and sending more shocks into the Tarantula.

The image was released as part of the Hubble Heritage Project. The program presents a new image from the Hubble Space Telescope archives on the World Wide Web on the first Thursday of each month.


RELATED STORIES:
Hubble images reveal dynamic seasons on Uranus
March 30, 1999
Hubble captures new portrait of a doomed star
January 7, 1999
Stars burst to life before Hubble's lens
October 21, 1997
Oooh! Ahhh! New cool pics from Hubble
June 9, 1997

RELATED SITES:
Space Telescope Science Institute
NASA
Internet Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Resources
The Tarantula Nebula
Las Positas College - "Tarantula Nebula (NGC 2070)"
Note: Pages will open in a new browser window
External sites are not endorsed by CNN Interactive.

 LATEST HEADLINES:
SEARCH CNN.com
Enter keyword(s)   go    help

Back to the top   © 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.