Messier Monday: The Little Dumbbell Nebula, M76 (Synopsis)

“If there is nothing new under the sun, at least the sun itself is always new, always re-creating itself out of its own inexhaustible fire.” -Michael Sims

It takes the death of old stars to create the newer generations of stars in the Universe, and it's through the very act of that stellar death that "interesting" material finds its way into the Universe. This way, the subsequent generations of star systems will have more heavy elements, more rocky planets, more complex chemistry, and -- in the end -- more opportunities for life.

This Messier Monday brings us a look at not only this process, but at the single faintest object in the entire Messier catalogue.

Image credit: Fred Herrmann, 2014, via Image credit: Fred Herrmann, 2014, via

If you're up for a challenge, check out the Little Dumbbell Nebula, Messier 76, over on Starts With A Bang's 108th (third-from-last) Messier Monday!


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