The yellowish star near center in this remarkable
is T Tauri, prototype of the class of
T Tauri variable stars.
Nearby it is a dusty yellow cosmic cloud
known as Hind's Variable Nebula (NGC 1555).
Over 400 light-years away, at the edge of a molecular cloud,
both star and nebula
are seen to vary significantly in
brightness but not necessarily at the same time,
adding to the mystery of the intriguing region.
T Tauri stars are now generally recognized as young
(less than a few million years old),
sun-like stars still in the
early stages of
complicate the picture, infrared observations indicate
that T Tauri itself is part of a multiple system and
suggest that the associated
Nebula may also contain a very young stellar object.
The naturally colored image spans about 4 light-years at the estimated
of T Tauri.
Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter,