North is to the top.
This synthetic RGB color image was acquired with Ha and OIII
filters. Ha was mapped to the red channel and the OIII to both green
and blue. The Veil nebula is especially suitable for creating this
type of simulated "true" color image.
To the left is the Eastern Veil, or NGC 6992. In the center is
Pickering's Triangle. To the right, is the Witch's Broom
Nebula, or NGC 6960.
These wisps of gas are
all that remain visible of a Milky Way star. Many thousands of years
ago that star exploded in a supernova leaving the Veil Nebula. At
the time, the expanding cloud was likely as bright as a crescent
Moon toward the constellation of Cygnus, visible for weeks to people
living at the dawn of recorded history. The remaining supernova
remnant lies about 1400 light-years away and covers over five times
the size of the full Moon. The bright wisp on the right is known as
the Witch's Broom Nebula and can be seen with a small telescope. The
Veil Nebula is also known as the Cygnus Loop.