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Stellar Titans of Pismis 24
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Name: Pismis 24, NGC 6357
Description: Star Cluster
Position (J2000): RA 17 25 24.07 Dec -34° 25' 47.79"
Constellation: Scorpius
Distance: 8000 light years
Field of view: 13.59 x 13.43 arcminutes
Orientation: North is 135.1° left of vertica
Image Credit: ESO/IDA/Danish 1.5 m/ R. Gendler, U.G. Jørgensen, J. Skottfelt,      K. Harpsøel
Release date: April 12, 2010

Related images:   N1309   S1015   S0654   N1226   N1612
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Home to some of the largest stars ever discovered, the open stellar cluster Pismis 24 blazes from the core of NGC 6357, a nebula in the constellation of Scorpius (the Scorpion). Several stars in the clusters weigh in at over 100 times the mass of the Sun, making them real monster stars. The strange shapes taken by the clouds are a result of the huge amount of blazing radiation emitted by these massive, hot stars. The gas and dust of the nebula hide huge baby stars in the nebula from telescopes observing in visible light, as well as adding to the hazy appearance of the image.

This image combines observations performed through three different filters in visible light (B, V, R) with the 1.5-meter Danish telescope at the ESO La Silla Observatory in Chile.