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7 images of ghostly nebulae

By: Katherine Butler on Oct. 24, 2011, 6 p.m.
swirly ghostlike space photo

Photo: Adam Block, NOAO, AURA, NSF

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Odd, creepy or ghostly

As the Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes point their lenses into the vast unknown of space, we get a glimpse of the universe in all its weird and wonderful glory. NASA and other space agencies dutifully catalogue all images beamed back to Earth, but some stand out from the others. Some of the most mysterious are images of nebulae, those interstellar clouds of gas and dust that give birth to the stars. We've lined up seven images of interesting nebulae — some odd, some creepy and some that simply beg for your interpretation.


Pictured here is the dark nebula SH2-136. NASA notes that it looks like a ghoulish creature at right is chasing two human forms. (Text: Katherine Butler)