A Bright Lizard Star


The galaxy NGC 7250 should dominate this image. It has bright bursts of star formation and recorded supernova explosions, but it fades into the background next to the bright star hogging the limelight next to it.

That bright star is named TYC 3203-450-1. It’s located in the constellation of Lacerta (The Lizard). The star is much closer than NGC 7250 which how it is able to outshine a whole galaxy. Astronomers studying distant objects call such stars “foreground stars,” and they are often not very happy about them. Their bright light contaminates the fainter light from more distant and interesting objects they actually want to study.

TYC 3203-450-1 is million times closer than NGC 7250.

Image Credit: NASA / ESA

Cosmic Bubble Wrap


These tenuous threads are part of Sh2-308, a faint and wispy shell of gas located 5,200 light-years away in the constellation of Canis Major. A star known as EZ Canis Majoris was responsible for creating Sh2-308 when it blew off its outer layers. The star’s intense radiation pushes the bubble, blowing it bigger and bigger. The edges of Sh2-308 are about 60 light-years apart and growing.

Image Credit: NASA / ESA