Here’s a new WITU Challenge! Take a look at this image and see if you can determine where in the universe this image is from; give yourself extra points if you can name the spacecraft/telescope responsible for the image. We’ll provide the image today, but won’t reveal the answer until tomorrow. This gives you a chance to mull over the image and provide your answer/guess in the comment section. Please, no links or extensive explanations of what you think this is — give everyone the chance to guess.
Remember, we’ll take suggestions for future WITU’s — just send Nancy an email
UPDATE: The answer has now been posted below.
This eye-shaped object is the Planetary Nebula NGC 6826, and the image was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope on Jan. 27, 1996 with the Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2. NGC 6826 is 2,200 light- years away in the constellation Cygnus, and the hot remnant star in the center of the green oval is one of the brightest stars in any planetary nebula. See more about this image on the HubbleSite.
Nancy Atkinson is currently Universe Today’s Contributing Editor. Previously she served as UT’s Senior Editor and lead writer, and has worked with Astronomy Cast and 365 Days of Astronomy. Nancy is the author of the new book “Incredible Stories from Space: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Missions Changing Our View of the Cosmos.” She is also a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.