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Located in our galaxy about 5,500 light years from Earth, NGC 6357 is a diffuse nebula in the constellation Scorpius.

The nebula contains many proto-stars shielded by dark disks of gas, and young stars wrapped in expanding “cocoons” or expanding gases surrounding these small stars. It is also known as the Lobster Nebula.

This composite image contains X-ray data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and the ROSAT telescope (purple), infrared data from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope (orange), and optical data from the SuperCosmos Sky Survey (blue) made by the United Kingdom Infrared Telescope.

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