Mounted image 160: The Pencil Nebula
This strange and beautiful structure is the Pencil Nebula, NGC 2736, a supernova remnant in the constellation of Vela (The Sails). The glowing filaments were created from material ejected in a supernova explosion that took place about 11 000 years ago. The brightest part resembles a pencil, hence the name, and the whole structure looks a little like a traditional witch’s broom. This picture was captured by the Wide Field Imager on the MPG/ESO 2.2-metre telescope at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile.