This infrared view of the playfully named Cat’s Paw Nebula, otherwise known as NGC 6334 — taken by European Southern Observatory’s VISTA telescope, is a vast region of star formation about 5500 light-years from Earth in the constellation of Scorpius. VISTA views the skies in infrared, just outside what our eyes can see. The whole gas cloud is about 50 light-years across. In it, you can see a couple of soap-bubble features, places where the furious light and winds from young, massive stars have compressed the gas around them.
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Credit: ESO/J. Emerson/VISTA