The Small Magellanic Cloud is a satellite galaxy of the Milky Way about 200 thousand light-years from Earth. Near its outskirts lies a 5 million year young star cluster called NGC 602. This Hubble image of the cluster has been augmented by images from the Chandra X-ray Observatory and in the infrared from the Spitzer Space Telescope. The fantastic ridges and swept back shapes in the surrounding gas and dust strongly suggest that energetic radiation and shock waves from NGC 602’s massive young stars are eroding that material and are triggering a progression of star formation moving away from the cluster’s center.
Image Credit: NASA / ESA