Will the spider ever catch the fly? Not if both are large emission nebulas toward the constellation of the Charioteer (Auriga). The spider-shaped gas cloud on the left is actually an emission nebula labelled IC 417, while the smaller fly-shaped cloud on the right is dubbed NGC 1931 and is both an emission nebula and a reflection nebula. About 10,000 light-years distant, both nebulas harbor young, open star clusters. For scale, the more compact NGC 1931 (Fly) is about 10 light-years across. The featured picture in scientifically-assigned, infrared colors combines images from the Spitzer Space Telescope and the Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS). Spitzer is celebrating its 16th year orbiting the Sun near the Earth.
Image & info via APOD: https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html
Image Credit: NASA, JPL-Caltech, Spitzer Space Telescope, 2MASS
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