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Dumbbell Nebula

Apple Core Nebula, Diabolo Nebula, M27, NGC 6853, PK 60-3.1

Proper NamesApple Core Nebula, Diabolo Nebula, Dumbbell Nebula
Messier NumberM27
NGC/IC NumberNGC 6853
Right Ascension20h 00m 12s
Declination+22° 45'
Distancec.1,040 light years
c.320 parsecs
Mean DiameterApparent: c. 8' x 6'
Actual: c.1 light year
Optimum VisibilityAugust
NotesIn 1764, the Dumbbell became the first planetary nebula to be discovered. The dumbbell shape is due to expanding layers of gas thrown off from its central star (an unusually massive white dwarf) some ten thousand years ago.

A well-known planetary nebula in Vulpecula, near that constellation's border with Sagitta. The Dumbbell Nebula is an expanding 'bubble' of gas and dust cast off by a dying star; details of its structure give it its characteristic 'dumbbell' shape.


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