A ‘wedding ring’ in space

An unusually circular, ring of gas aligns behind a star to create a sparkling image

By Christopher Crockett, 08:03 AM April 10, 2014

A new image from the Very Large Telescope in Chile shows what resembles a diamond ring in space.

The ring — which appears blue in the image above — is actually the ghostly outer remnant of a dead star. This field of gas, known as Abell 33, is so big that it would take light three years to pass from one side of it to the other.

A star’s glow comes from the fusion of densely packed atoms. Gravity holds this ball of atoms closely together. At the same time, those fusion reactions try to push the b...

Source URL: https://student.societyforscience.org/article/‘wedding-ring’-space