A new image combining previously released data from three telescopes shows a region that includes the Orion Nebula, named after the mighty hunter from Greek mythology who was felled by a scorpion’s sting. But the story of how this dusty region came to be is just as dramatic.
The Orion Nebula is located in the constellation Orion, which takes the appearance of a hunter raising a club and shield at an unseen target. Three stars in a line are together known as Orion’s belt; the region shown in the image aligns with another series of stars perpendicular to the belt, known as Orion’s sword. If you could see it in the sky, the region would appear about the size of the full moon.