- Press Release
- September 27, 2023
Webb Reveals Structure And Astrochemistry Of The Ring Nebula
NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has observed the well-known Ring Nebula in unprecedented detail. Formed by a star throwing off its outer layers as it runs out of fuel, the Ring Nebula is an archetypal planetary nebula.
This new image from Webb’s NIRCam (Near-Infrared Camera) shows intricate details of the filament structure of the inner ring. There are some 20,000 dense globules in the nebula, which are rich in molecular hydrogen.
In contrast, the inner region shows very hot gas. The main shell contains a thin ring of enhanced emission from carbon-based molecules known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).