Scientists reveal unexpected structure of Southern Ring Nebula: ‘We were surprised’

The glorious, billowing Southern Ring Nebula is the cocoon of a dying star, and it has a secret. Scientists have found that this nebula has a double ring structure that shows not one, but possibly three stars at its heart.

The Southern Ring Nebula, also designated NGC 3132, is a planetary nebula located about 2,000 light years far away in the constellation of Vela, the Veles. The name “planetary nebula“it’s a misnomer: these nebulae have nothing to do with each other planets. Instead, they are the final exhalations of death, ground-I like stars, which transform inside the nebulous chrysalis until it finally blossoms into a white dwarf. A nebula forms from the outer envelope of the dying star, which swells space following that of the star red giant phase

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