X-ray View of ‘Hand of God’

A supernova remnant rises like an ethereal hand up the center of the image. The “wrist” appears in bright white while the finger-like structures are formed from a tangle of yellow strands of emission. This hand-shaped nebula intersects a spotty red oval with dots of light.
Historical DateJanuary 9, 2014
  • english

Nicknamed the "Hand of God," this object is called a pulsar wind nebula and is powered by the leftover, dense core of a star that blew up in a supernova explosion. In this image, X-ray light seen by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory with energy ranges of 0.5 to 2 kiloelectron volts (keV) and 2 to 4 keV is shown in red and green, respectively, while X-ray light detected by NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) in the higher-energy range of 7 to 25 keV is blue.