The Protostar HH-34 in Orion

The Protostar HH-34 in Orion
From The European Southern Observatory
This image shows a three-color composite of the young object Herbig-Haro 34 (HH-34), now in the protostar stage of evolution. This object has a remarkable, very complicated appearance that includes two opposite jets that ram into the surrounding interstellar matter. This structure is produced by a machine-gun-like blast of "bullets" of dense gas ejected from the star at high velocities (approaching 250 km/sec). Evidentially the star experiences episodic "outbursts" when large chunks of material fall onto it from a surrounding disk. HH-34 is located at a distance of about 1,500 light-years, near the famous Orion Nebula, one of the most productive star birth regions. Note also the enigmatic "waterfall" to the upper left, a feature that is still unexplained.
This photograph is based on a composite of three images taken through three different filters: B (wavelength 429 nm; Full-Width-Half-Maximum (FWHM) 88 nm; exposure time 10 min; here rendered as blue), Ha (centered on the hydrogen emission line at wavelength 656 nm; FWHM 6 nm; 30 min; green) and S II (centered at the emission lines of ionized sulfur at wavelength 673 nm; FWHM 6 nm; 30 min; red) during a period of 0.8 arcsec seeing. The field shown measures 6.8 arcmin x 6.8 arcmin and the images were recorded in frames of 2048 pixels x 2048 pixels, each measuring 0.2 arcsec. North is up; East is left.
Based on press release with ESO PR Photo 40b/99
Catalog #: Photo 40b/99
Target Name: The Protostar HH-34 in Orion

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 Last Modified On: Sunday, December 17, 2000