The Cat's Eye nebula lies three thousand light-years from Earth. A classic planetary nebula, the Cat's Eye (NGC 6543) represents a final, brief yet glorious phase in the life of a sun-like star. This nebula's dying central star may have produced the simple, outer pattern of dusty concentric shells by shrugging off outer layers in a series of regular convulsions.
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Star Formation in the Tarantula Nebula - more at apod.nasa.gov/... (credit: NASA, ESA, ESO, D. Lennon (ESA/STScI) et al., and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA))