600 light-years

One of the most colourful vistas in the night sky is the region around the red supergiant star called Antares. This huge star is about 700 times the diameter of our Sun. If we had a star of this size in our Solar System it would completely engulf all the planets out as far as Mars - including Earth. Behind Antares there are colourful areas of hydrogen gas (pink) and dust (yellow). To the right is the triplet star Rho Ophiuchi, sitting in its own glowing blue mantle of gas. This image also includes the globular star clusters M4 and NGC 6144.

Credit: Jay Ballauer / Adam Block / NOAO / AURA / NSF

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