Astronomy Picture of the Week – The Cat’s Eye Nebula

This detailed view of the so-called Cat’s Eye Nebula was taken by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope. The nebula, formally cataloged as NGC 6543, was one of the first planetary nebulae to be discovered and is one of the most complex. Observations suggest the star ejected its mass in a series of pulses at 1,500-year intervals. This created dust shells, each of which contain as much mass as all of the planets in our solar system combined. These concentric shells make a layered, onion-skin structure around the dying star.

Cat's Eye NebulaImage Credit: NASA, ESA, HEIC, and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

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Paul Tomaszewski is a science & tech writer as well as a programmer and entrepreneur. He is the founder and editor-in-chief of CosmoBC. He has a degree in computer science from John Abbott College, a bachelor's degree in technology from the Memorial University of Newfoundland, and completed some business and economics classes at Concordia University in Montreal. While in college he was the vice-president of the Astronomy Club. In his spare time he is an amateur astronomer and enjoys reading or watching science-fiction. You can follow him on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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