<p>HH 24, a region 1,500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Orion, ejects lightsaber-like jets of energized gas. The jets—which flow from <a href="http://www.gemini.edu/node/12429">a protostar cluster</a>—create shockwaves that form <a href="http://astronomy.swin.edu.au/cosmos/h/herbig-haro+object">Herbig-Haro objects</a>, the visible “beams.”</p>

The Force Awakens

HH 24, a region 1,500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Orion, ejects lightsaber-like jets of energized gas. The jets—which flow from a protostar cluster—create shockwaves that form Herbig-Haro objects, the visible “beams.”

Photograph by ESA/Hubble & NASA, D. Padgett (GSFC), T. Megeath (University of Toledo), and B. Reipurth (University of Hawaii)

Week's Best Space Pictures: Orion's Lightsabers and Dust Doughnuts

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Feed your need for heavenly views of the universe. This week, jets of energized gas create visible shockwaves in deep space, hurricanes form a single-file line across the Pacific Ocean, and a ring of space dust holds a surprising secret in its inner sanctum.

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