|It may look to some like a duck, but it lays stars instead of eggs.
In the center of the
lies Barnard 163, a nebula of
molecular gas and
dust so thick that
visible light can't shine through it.
With a wing span
measured in light years, Barnard 163's insides are surely colder than its exterior, allowing conditions where gas can clump and eventually
Barnard 163 lies about 3,000
from Earth toward the constellation of
Cepheus the King.
The red glow in the background results from IC 1396, a large
emission nebula that houses the
Elephant's Trunk Nebula.
Finding Barnard 163 in an
image of its greater emission nebula
can be a challenge, but it's possible.
(U. Alaska Anchorage),