This colossal star nest 5000 light years away, in the Sagittarius constellation, is the heart of the Lagoon Nebula. Now, imagine you could operate the Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys like a gigantic DSLR camera with telephoto lenses.
If that would be possible, this is how the zooming on this titanic dust and gas cloud would be like. Galaxy ENHANCE!
No LSD needed for this one, Steve.
Of course, that’s not how Hubble works. The video trip is composed with multiple images, merged onto each other in a digital composition program.
The intricate shapes of the nebula are caused by the ultraviolet radiation glowing from the infant stars, which disperse the gas and dust around them as they form. In fact, scientists found here the “first unambiguous proof that star formation by accretion of matter from the gas cloud is ongoing in this region”. [NASA Goddard]