How the Tulip Nebula (Sh2-101) is More than Just a Gorgeous Image

By on Mar 23, 2014 in Pictures | 0 comments

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How the Tulip Nebula (Sh2-101) is More than Just a Gorgeous Image


The Tulip Nebula (Sh2-101)

Image Credit & Copyright: Michael Joner, David Laney (West Mountain Observatory, BYU); Processing – Robert Gendler


This image really takes my breath away. Everyone, say hello to the beautiful cosmic flower called the Tulip Nebula (Sh2-101). This gorgeous nebula is about 8,000 light years away from Earth. You can find this in the constellation of Cygnus which is located within our Milky Way. The Tulip Nebula was first discovered in 1959 by astronomer Stewart Sharpless. What’s cool about this image is it’s a composite image that maps the emission. The red gasses in this image represent ionized sulfur, the green is hydrogen, and finally blue is the lovely oxygen. The ultraviolet radiation from young energetic O star called HDE 227018 ionizes the atoms and powers the Tulip Nebula. HDE 227018 can be seen glowing brilliantly right in the middle of this image near the blue arc. Also, one more little piece of information that makes this image more than just a beautiful nebula. The Tulip nebula is in close proximity to microquasar Cygnus X-1, which is one of the first suspected black holes! There isn’t a whole lot of information on this nebula but if you have anything else to add then feel free to comment below!




  1. Carnival of Space #357 - Universe Today - […] more gorgeous images? Visit to see his discussion of the Tulip Nebula, which is a composite image which…

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