The nebula appears as a swirl of magenta and purple clouds in a shape roughly like a human heart. The central part of the nebula has a bright magenta oval surrounded by white and pale purple. Through this central region there are lines overlaid on the image showing where SOFIA has obtained information about the magnetic fields. The lines run from the left down through the lower part of the magenta oval. Some of the bundle of lines loop up and over the magenta center, all meeting toward the middle of the image. All of this is on a black background dotted with white lights.
Credit: NASA, the SOFIA science team, Y. Seo; ESO
Published: January 19, 2022

NASA's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) detected the magnetic field streamlines shown over this image of the Keyhole Nebula, part of the larger Carina Nebula, captued by the European Southern Observatory 3.6-metre telescope on La Silla.

More information: https://www.sofia.usra.edu/publications/science-results-archive/role-magnetic-fields-cloud-destruction-keyhole-nebula

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