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What is a Nebula? Common Names for Nebulae D-G and Their Information

Updated on August 28, 2012
Cone Nebula (Text by Author)
Cone Nebula (Text by Author) | Source

What is a nebula? A nebula is a cloud of gases and dust that usually surrounds a star that has gone supernova, or is in the process of dying. The gases and dust are being sloughed off by the star and is slowly expanding away from the central star creating the nebulous mass.

The names commonly used for nebulae beginning with the letters, D through G, will be covered in this article. These common names often use everyday objects to describe their appearance. You will see nebula named after an Eskimo, Elephant’s Trunk, Egg and Flame. This grouping of nebula includes the well-known and majestic Eagle Nebula and the thought-provoking God’s Eye Nebula.

What is a Nebula? Part 1, Different Kinds of Nebula, sets the groundwork for this nebula series. In that introduction you will find a discussion of the different types of nebulae. In the event that you are searching for only one certain nebula, a complete listing of the nebulae can be found. Just click on the name of that one and you will be taken to the correct article where that nebula is discussed.


Wizard Nebula, NGC 7380
Wizard Nebula, NGC 7380 | Source
Keyhole Nebula
Keyhole Nebula | Source

Nebulae Listing D - G

To learn more about each nebula, click on the hyper-links. You will be taken to a location within this article, or off-site to a location within another site for more information.

Doradus Nebula
Doradus Nebula | Source

Doradus Nebula, Messier 27


Name: Doradus Nebula, Messier 27

Distance from Earth: approximately 170,000 light years

Notes: most active stellar nursery in our universe

For more information: click here

Dumbbell Nebula
Dumbbell Nebula | Source

Dumbbell Nebula, NGC 6853


Name: Dumbbell Nebula, NGC 6853, Messier 27

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 1,360 light years

In Constellation: Vulpecula

Notes: first planetary nebula to ever be discovered

For more information: click here

Pillars of Creation is a Stellar Nursery
Pillars of Creation is a Stellar Nursery | Source

Eagle Nebula, Seagull Nebula, NGC 6611

Name: Eagle Nebula, Seagull Nebula, NGC 6611, Messier 16

Notes: young nebula, stellar nursery

For more information: click here


The video below of the Eagle Nebula was captured by Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys. This video exhibits just how enormous the cloud of gas and dust that makes up the nebula really is.


Eagle Nebula


The Pillars of Creation is part of the Eagle Nebula. The Pillars of Creation is the birthplace of many stars. The audio that accompanies the video below is from the radio program, Stardate.



For more information about the Eagle Nebula, click here.

Egg Nebula
Egg Nebula | Source
A different view of the Egg Nebula that show the circles or arcs of shed material that this nebula is famous for.
A different view of the Egg Nebula that show the circles or arcs of shed material that this nebula is famous for. | Source

Egg Nebula


Name: Egg Nebula, Rotten Egg Nebula, RAGL 2688, CRL 2688

Type of Nebula: bipolar protoplanetary nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 3,000 light-years

Size: approximately .6 light years across

Notes: was discovered early in 1996 by NASA scientists

For more information: click here

Elephant's Trunk Nebula
Elephant's Trunk Nebula | Source

Elephant's Trunk Nebula


Name: Elephant's Trunk Nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 2,400 light years

In Constellation: Cepheus

Notes: stellar nursery

For more information: click here


For more information about this nebula, click here.

Eskimo Nebula
Eskimo Nebula | Source

Eskimo Nebula, NGC 2392


Name: Eskimo Nebula, NGC 2392

Type of Nebula: planetary nebula

Notes: a very complex structure that is not fully understood by scientists, named after its resemblance of a person's head surrounded by a furry parka hood

For more information: click here

Close-up of Flame Nebula
Close-up of Flame Nebula | Source

Flame Nebula, NGC 2024


Name: Flame Nebula, NGC 2024

Type of Nebula: emission nebula

Distance from Earth: approximately 1,500 light years

In Constellation: Orion

Notes: stellar nursery

For more information: click here. This site also contains a wider image of this nebula.

Fox Fur Nebula
Fox Fur Nebula | Source

Fox Fur Nebula, NGC 2264


Name: Fox Fur Nebula, NGC 2264

In Constellation: Monoceros

Notes: part of what is generally referred to as the Christmas Tree Cluster Nebula, which also contains the Cone Nebula

For more information: click here

Gum Nebula
Gum Nebula | Source

Gum Nebula


Name: Gum Nebula

Type of Nebula: largest known emission nebula

Distance from Earth: about 450 light-years

In Constellations: Vela and Puppis

Notes: includes the Vela Supernova Remnant

For more information: click here


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Copyright © 2011 Cindy Murdoch



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For a comprehensive slide show of nebulae photos taken by Hubble, click here.


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Comments: "What is a Nebula? Part 3, Common Names for Nebulae D-G and Their Information"

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    • homesteadbound profile imageAUTHOR

      Cindy Murdoch 

      6 years ago from Texas

      molometer - thanks so much. I really appreciate you taking the time to comment.

      I was pleased that I was able to find the videos for the 3D journey through the nebulas. It was surreal.

      Thanks for stopping by and for commenting.

    • molometer profile image

      molometer 

      6 years ago from United Kingdom

      I am speechless, these hubs are stunning, mind-blowing and amazing.

      Name: Doradus Nebula, Messier 27

      Distance from Earth: approximately 170,000 light years

      Notes: most active stellar nursery in our universe

      That is unimaginably distant.

      Love the Eagle Nebula in 3D and the pillars of creation.

    • homesteadbound profile imageAUTHOR

      Cindy Murdoch 

      6 years ago from Texas

      Very cute! I'm not sure I can top that one so I guess I will just let it sit!

    • davenmidtown profile image

      David Stillwell 

      6 years ago from Sacramento, California

      you don't want to be exposed to a nebula... they are just gas and dust... and probably bad gas too!

    • homesteadbound profile imageAUTHOR

      Cindy Murdoch 

      6 years ago from Texas

      davenmidtown - Nebulae are very cool indeed. I think it would have been neat to have been more exposed to this as a child. Thanks so much for stopping by!

    • davenmidtown profile image

      David Stillwell 

      7 years ago from Sacramento, California

      HSB: this is one of the reasons photography has always interested me. My mother was an amiture astronomer... so we grew up with these sorts of concepts and of course star gazing...

    • homesteadbound profile imageAUTHOR

      Cindy Murdoch 

      7 years ago from Texas

      Chasing Riley - I couldn't tell you how I got interested in them. I find that I am interested in many things and always trying to learn many things.

      I hope your son's teacher will find them interesting. I have two more to complete though. Not sure if I will have the fourth one ready tomorrow or not.

      Thanks for stopping by!

    • Chasing Riley profile image

      Chasing Riley 

      7 years ago from Los Angeles

      Wow! I never saw anything like that eagle nebula before. The pictures are amazing. Did you mention how you got interested in nebulas? I wish I found these hubs before our school nebula project. I'm going to tell my son's teacher about this.

    • homesteadbound profile imageAUTHOR

      Cindy Murdoch 

      7 years ago from Texas

      Hello, Beth! So glad you stopped by. Now I am going to go look and see if I can find information about the Christmas Tree Nebula.

      Thanks!

    • Beth Pipe profile image

      Beth Pipe 

      7 years ago from Cumbria, UK

      I am learning *so* much from your hubs! Yesterday I went in search of pictures of the Christmas Tree Nebula that I'd heard of - just stunning!

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