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Wednesday, May 8, 2013 4:05pm -0400

A Jellyfish in the Cosmic Ocean: The Jellyfish Nebula

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The Jellyfish Nebula (IC 443) The Jellyfish Nebula (IC 443) David Lindemann

Carl Sagan famously once said "The surface of the Earth is the shore of the cosmic ocean. On this shore, we've learned most of what we know. Recently, we've waded a little way out, maybe ankle-deep, and the water seems inviting."


I like to think of astrophotographers as fishermen standing on that shore casting their line into the star studded surf. There are many wonders that have been caught by talented photographers. One such celestial wonder is the Jellyfish nebula, captured in bright and colorful detail by David Lindemann.

As it floats near the bright star Eta Geminorumhe the cosmic jellyfish is seen to be part of bubble-shaped supernova remnant IC 443, the expanding debris cloud from an exploded star some 5,000 light-years away in the constellation Gemini. IC 443 is one of the best-studied cases of supernova remnants interacting with surrounding molecular clouds. Light from the explosion first reached planet Earth over 30,000 years ago. At 5,000 light-years away, this image would be about 100 light-years across.

It is nice to dream we may one day have ships like the one Carl piloted in his legendary TV series, Cosmos. Maybe one day humans will be able to see these incredible wonders with their own eyes as they park their galaxy class star ships on the edge of an enormous nebula and take in all the breathtaking detail. 

0To see more of David Lindemann's photos or to purchace a print visit Our Photo Gallery

Read 5631 times Last modified on Thursday, June 20, 2013 1:12pm -0400
Laurel Nendza

Laurel Nendza is the owner and creator of Stellar Eyes.