Feb 15

New infrared view of the Trifid Nebula reveals new variable stars far beyond

Source: ESO Photo Release eso1504

Image cVISTA views the Trifid Nebula and reveals hidden variable starsVISTA views the Trifid Nebula and reveals hidden variable stars.
Image credit: ESO/VVV consortium/D. Minniti

A new image taken with ESO’s VISTA survey telescope reveals the famous Trifid Nebula in a new and ghostly light. By observing in infrared light, astronomers can see right through the dust-filled central parts of the Milky Way and spot many previously hidden objects. In just this tiny part of one of the VISTA surveys, astronomers have discovered two unknown and very distant Cepheid variable stars that lie almost directly behind the Trifid. They are the first such stars found that lie in the central plane of the Milky Way beyond its central bulge. (learn more)

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