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2003 October 2
Explanation: The 1970s are often overlooked. In particular, the beautiful grouping of reflection nebulae NGC 1977, NGC 1975, and NGC 1973 in Orion are often overlooked in favour of the substantial stellar nursery better known as the Orion Nebula. Found along the sword of Orion just north of the bright Orion Nebula complex, these nebulae are also associated with Orion's giant molecular cloud which lies about 1,500 light-years away, but are dominated by the characteristic blue colour of interstellar dust reflecting light from hot young stars. In this sharp colour image a portion of the Orion Nebula appears along the bottom border with the cluster of reflection nebulae at picture centre. NGC 1977 stretches across the field just below centre, separated from NGC 1973 (above right) and NGC 1975 (above left) by dark regions laced with faint red emission from hydrogen atoms. Taken together, the dark regions suggest to many the shape of a running man.
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