NGC 6888, also known as the Crescent Nebula,
is a cosmic bubble about 25 light-years across, blown by winds
from its central, bright, massive star. This beautiful
telescopic view combines a composite color image with narrow
band data that isolates light from hydrogen and oxygen atoms in
the wind-blown nebula. The oxygen atoms produce the blue-green
hue that seems to enshroud the detailed folds and filaments. NGC
6888's central star is classified as a Wolf-Rayet star (WR 136).
The star is shedding its outer envelope in a strong stellar
wind, ejecting the equivalent of the Sun's mass every 10,000
years. The nebula's complex structures are likely the result of
this strong wind interacting with material ejected in an earlier
phase. Burning fuel at a prodigious rate and near the end of its
stellar life this star should ultimately go out with a bang in a
spectacular supernova explosion. Found in the nebula rich
constellation Cygnus, NGC 6888 is about 5,000 light-years away.