From the 2Mass Image Gallery
The H II region W40 is part of a larger molecular cloud complex at a distance of 600-700 pc (1960-2300 light years). A bright cluster of stars is evident in the near-infrared 2MASS image which is not seen in the optical. In the 2MASS image, scores of stars are seen in the cluster, among the dust and nebulosity of the molecular cloud in which the stars are embedded. The cluster of young stars is behind at least 15 magnitudes of visual extinction. Image mosaic by S. Van Dyk (IPAC).
Text based on accompanying on-line materials.
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Last Modified On: Friday, December 15, 2000