Anti - Stellar 'Family Tree' W25






Oil on Canvas

28" x 22"



This painting is an artistic interpretation of a Spitzer infrared portrait of the constellation Cassiopeia, that spans an area of sky equivalent to four full moons and is about 6,500 light-years away, in the wispy star-forming region called W5. The image consists of a three-color inverted composite of infrared observations - red representing 3.6-micron light, purple representing 8 micron light, and blue representing 24-micron light. The oldest stars can be seen as red dots in the centers of the two hollow cavities (other red dots are background and foreground stars not associated with the region). Younger stars line the rims of the cavities, and some can be seen as green dots at the tips of the elephant-trunk-like pillars. The black knotty areas are where the youngest stars are forming. Blue shows heated dust that pervades the region's cavities, while pink highlights dense clouds.

Like other massive star-forming regions W5 contains large cavities that were carved out by radiation and winds from the region's most massive stars. According to the theory of triggered star-formation, the carving out of these cavities pushes gas together, causing it to ignite into successive generations of new stars. Scientists analyzing the photo have been able to show that the ages of the stars become progressively and systematically younger with distance from the center of the cavities.



Also Available as Limited Edition Prints

Giclee Print Price
20 X 20 $110