This is a wide-angle photograph comprised of three nebulae. The largest and most well know, the Orion Nebula is a famous diffuse emission/reflection nebula located in the constellation Orion. It is also known as Messier 42 (M42) or the Great Orion Nebula. Its designation in the New General Catalogue is NGC 1976. Just to the bottom left of the Orion Nebula lies Messier 43 (M43), also known as De Marian’s Nebula, and is also a star-forming region. M43 has an apparent magnitude of 9.0 and lies at 1,600 light years from Earth. It has the designation NGC 1982 in the New General Catalogue. And just off the left-hand side of both the Orion and De Marian’s Nebula lies the Running Man Nebula, NGC 1977 and is 1,460 light years away. It is known as the Running Man Nebula because many observers think it bears a resemblance to a human figure running with its arms in motion.
The brightest stars in the Orion nebula form an asterism known as the Trapezium Cluster. These young stars are responsible for most of the nebula’s glow.
The Orion Nebula is one of the brightest nebulae in the night sky and, lying at 1,344 light years, it is the nearest region of massive star formation to Earth. It can be seen without binoculars, and its brightness and proximity make M42 one of the most studied objects in the night sky.
This is a false color photograph from Hydrogen Alpha, Oxygen III and Sulfur II filters combined and processed in PixInsight.