Heralded as the most famous celestial band -- second only to the rings of Saturn -- the Ring Nebula (also categorized as M57) glows with impressive "looping structures," in a way that looks stunningly like a giant blooming flower floating in space.
Luckily for us, the Hubble Space Telescope captured an image in beautiful detail, considering the Ring Nebula exists 2,000 light years away from Earth.
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According to the NASA-based website, the Ring Nebula's glowing outer layers are expelled from its dying center, which used to be a sun-like star. The "intense ultraviolet light" ionizes atoms an hydrogen in the gas, which create the green and reddish glow.
As if this photo wasn't pretty enough, take a look at this breathtaking time-lapse video of shots from the International Space Station.
Shot by the Expedition 30 crew, the video features shots of the Aurora Borealis above Hudson Bay, a comet's glowing tail, city lights and lightning storms over Africa.
For more, take a look at the space station'sstunning shot of Moscow from about 240 miles above earth.
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