The colorful "parka" or outer shell of gas and dust is expanding at speeds of 31,000 miles (50,000 kilometers) an hour, and is lit up by the radiation blasting out from the remains of a dying red giant at the center of the nebula.
The part of the gas cloud glowing at a million degrees near the center appears pink to Chandra's x-ray eye, while Hubble's vision highlights intricate streamers of gas in the outer shell in red, green, and blue.
Image courtesy N. Ruiz et al, IAA-CSIC/CXC/STScI/NASA
Eye in the Sky
Perched atop a desolate mountain in the western Himalaya at 14,800 feet (4,517 meters) above sea level, the Indian Astronomical Observatory is the world's highest telescope facility.
Located in the cloudless, high-altitude desert near the Chinese border in the village of Hanle, India (map), the Chandra telescope is touted as one of the most sophisticated in the Eastern Hemisphere.
In this long-exposure photograph of the mountain observatory—released July 13—bright stars create curved trails over the course of a few hours.
The sky appears to turn as the Earth rotates around its axis. The North Star (center), to which our planet's north axis appears to point, remains motionless. (Related: "North Star Closer to Earth Than Thought.")