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Mars Paw Nebula

Ever wonder how astronomical objects got their name?  Dottie convinced our cat Mars to demonstrate how the Cat's Paw Nebula got its name.  Of course, now Mars wants me to rename the nebula the "Mars Paw Nebula"!

The Cat's Paw nebula (NGC 6334) is located in the lower part of Scorpio, near the "stinger", and is actually pretty big... larger than a full moon.  This area of gas and dust is an active star forming region.  The nebula is too dim to see with the eye but a long camera exposure easily reveals it.  

 

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