The Eskimo Nebula is 5,000 light years from Earth. The "hood" is, in fact, a ring of comet-shaped objects flying away from a dying star. The Ant Nebula, a cloud of dust and gas, lies within our galaxy, between 3,000 and 6,000 light years from Earth. It resembles an ant when observed using ground-based telescopes. 3,000 light years away, the Cat's Eye Nebula is a dying star that throws off shells of glowing gas. Some believe that it contains a binary central star. The Hourglass Nebula, 8,000 light years away, looks pinched in the middle because the winds that shape it are weaker at the centre. The glowing eyes from 114 million light years away are the swirling cores of two merging galaxies called NGC 2207 and IC 2163 in the distant Canis Major constellation.
The Cone Nebula. The part pictured here is 2.5 light years in length (the equivalent of 23 million return trips to the Moon). The Perfect Storm, part of the Swan Nebula, 5,500 light years away, is "a bubbly ocean of hydrogen and small amounts of oxygen, sulphur and other elements". Starry Night, so named because it reminded astronomers of the Van Gogh painting, is a halo of light around a star in the Milky Way. The Triffid Nebula. A "stellar nursery", 9,000 light years from here, it is where new stars are being born. The Sombrero Galaxy, 28 million light years from Earth, has 800 billion suns and is 50,000 light years across.