Sunday, January 28, 2007

Thor's Helmet in H-Alpha

Credit & Copyright: Don Goldman

Explanation: Near picture center, the helmet-shaped structure with wing-like appendages is popularly called Thor's Helmet. Cataloged as NGC 2359, the striking nebula is located about 15,000 light-years away in the constellation Canis Major. The helmet is actually more like a cosmic bubble, blown as the wind from the bright, massive star near the bubble's center sweeps through the surrounding molecular cloud. Known as a Wolf-Rayet star, the energetic star is a blue giant thought to be in a brief, pre-supernova stage of evolution. The remarkable color composite combines broad and narrow band images - including a deep exposure recorded with an H-alpha filter. The H-alpha image traces the light from the region's glowing atomic hydrogen gas. Heroically sized even for a Norse god, this Thor's Helmet is about 30 light-years across.

Thors Helmet from CFHT

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wow that is simply breath taking. I admire space too. Recently I ventured on the Hubble telescope's website and the pictures there blew me away.

Deacon Barry said...

Gosh! It looks just like the one in my Marvel annual. I guess that just proves that the norse religion is the true one. After all, how many crowns of thorns are there in space?

Stardust said...

deacon - good one! I was going to be humorous and title this post "Proof of Thor Found" but the way people are getting so nutty about the Zeus worship, I thought that might incite a revival for the Norse gods! LOL!

Stardust said...

damian, I don't know why your name changed to anonymous after changing over to the new blogger. I hope this isn't the start of problems. I didn't really want to convert my blogs, but I couldn't get rid of the full-screen forced invite to change them.

Anyone else have problems with this anonymous thing happening?

beepbeepitsme said...

The ancients observation of the stars nearly always involved the concept that they were gods, or the representation of gods. These shapes in the sky of course, thought like us, or looked like the things on earth that we were familar with. We imbued them with the characteristics and attributes of ourselves, but just more powerful or perfect versions of us.

The origin of our modern god concepts stem from our ancient observations of the skies. I think so anyway.

GhostRose said...

Whoa! Cool picture. I found this great website with space pictures on it the other week. I'll have to find it again.

Stardust said...

ghostrose - great! When you find it, come back and post the link for us! Thanks!

Krystalline Apostate said...

Wow, talk about pareidolia. It's Ragnorak! The sky is falling, run for your lives!
Seriously, folks...
Who named it, I wonder? Traditionally, a magical helm is associated w/Siegfried. While Thor has a helmet of sorts in most art, it's not listed among his...accessories.