NGC7009 is a planetary nebula in the constellation Aquarius. As with all planetary nebulae, it's the remnant of a red giant star which has ejected its outer gaseous shell leaving behind a hot, dense, white-dwarf star. It has been estimated that 95% of all stars, including our Sun, will end their lives in this way. NGC7009 has an estimated distance of 3,900 light years and an apparent diameter of 36".
This image is a color composite consisting of individual exposures through white (minus IR), red, green and blue filters (LRGB). The white (luminance) component is from 85, 10-second subexposures. RGB exposures were: 130x10sec, 99x10sec, and 68x10sec, respectively. The image was obtained on 9 September 2002.
Additional information and images can be found at Wikipedia - Saturn Nebula and at the SEDS - Saturn Nebula.
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