The Crab Nebula never fails to disappoint — and that's particularly true in this image, a view by the Herschel Space Observatory and the Hubble Space Telescope of the swirling cloud of dust and gas.
The image is a composite from the two satellites, combing Hubble's view of the nebula at visible wavelengths and Herschel's far-infrared data. The result reveals the electromagnetic emissions from the dust in the nebula. The images have revealed the presence of argon hydride — a molecular ion containing the noble gas argon — ion the crab nebula for the first time. In fact, that's the first ever detection of a noble-gas based compound in space. Clever and pretty. [NASA]
Image by ESA and NASA