NGC 2014, Henize 55 in the Large Magellanic Cloud
AAO image reference AATCCD 16.     « Previous || Next »

NGC 2014, Henize 55
Top left is NE. Image width is about 7 arc min
Image and text © 1999-2002, Australian Astronomical Observatory, Photograph by S. Lee, C. Tinney and D. Malin.


The nearby Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) is a very active star-forming galaxy. The most massive region of star formation is around 30 Doradus (the Tarantula nebula) which can be seen with the unaided eye, but hundreds of lesser examples are visible with a telescope. This picture shows one of the more intriguing, NGC 2014 (Henize 55). It contains cluster of hot, young stars, almost hidden in the brightest part of the nebula. The energetic ultraviolet light from these stars is absorbed by hydrogen and produces the distinctive red glow from an enormous distance around the cluster.

As well as radiating strongly in ultraviolet light (a result of their high temperature) massive young stars also produce vigorous stellar winds. Eventually they will disperse the hydrogen around them, evacuating a bubble-like nebula. To the left of the main cluster a single star has begun this process, creating a strange hollow shape.

This picture was made using an early CCD camera on the AAT where He 55 almost fills the imaging area. Elsewhere in this slide set (#2) is the same object imaged photographically with the UK Schmidt telescope. These plates cover the whole LMC and many images of individual objects can be made from them, but at lower resolution.

Entry from NGC 2000.0 (R.W. Sinnott, Ed.) © Sky Publishing Corporation, 1988:
NGC 2014 C+N 05 32.2  -67 40 r  Dor8. p Cl, pL, pC, iF, st 9...15 
For details of object position and photographic exposure, search technical table by AAT reference number.


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