Twenty years ago, the Hubble Space Telescope snapped one of its most iconic images ever. The three towering columns of gas bathed in the light of hot, young stars came to be called the Pillars of Creation:
Now, to celebrate its 25th anniversary, Hubble has taken a new image of the well-known region in the Eagle Nebula, about 6,500 light-years away. (see full-size image here)
The Hubble team also photographed the region at infrared wavelengths, which can reveal infant stars inside the gas and dust. That should help astronomers work out whether the nebula is an efficient star-former.