Tarantula Nebula is more than 1,000 light-years in diameter --
a giant star forming region within our neighboring galaxy
the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC).
That cosmic arachnid lies left of center in this sharp,
colorful telescopic image taken through
It covers a part of the LMC
over 2,000 light-years across.
Within the Tarantula (NGC 2070), intense radiation, stellar winds and
supernova shocks from the central young cluster of massive
stars, cataloged as R136,
energize the nebular glow and shape the spidery filaments.
Around the Tarantula are other violent star-forming regions with
young star clusters, filaments and
The rich field is about as wide
as the full Moon on the sky, located in the southern
John P. Gleason