The Pillars of Creation is the name given to the view of trunks of interstellar gas found within the vast Eagle Nebula, which are 6,500 light-years away from Earth. The scene was first photographed by the Hubble Space Telescope in 1995 and revisited in 2014, but NASA has just released a creepy, mid-infrared view of the Pillars from the James Webb Space Telescope.
"Trace the topmost pillar, landing on the bright red star jutting out of its lower edge like a broomstick," NASA says. "This star and its dusty shroud are larger than the size of our entire solar system."
We'd recommend that you download the full-resolution, uncompressed version (opens in new tab) of this spooky Pillars of Creation image so that you can delve into it in full detail.
Many people are calling this a chilling image, including NASA itself. One of the reasons that this image is haunting has to do with wavelengths of light, and what the James Webb Space Telescope can capture. It views scenes in mid-infrared light, and while this can show where dust is, it means the stars within the scene aren't at bright enough wavelengths to show up. Instead, all we do see are gigantic, looming pillars of gas and dust, only hinting at what's actually inside them.
If you want to keep up with the latest image releases, head to the James Webb Space Telescope gallery (opens in new tab), where you can see all of Webb's first images and learn more about what they depict. NASA will be launching new images at least every other week (opens in new tab).
We'll report on more James Webb Space Telescope images (opens in new tab) as they get released, from the angle of imaging than the subjects themselves.
If you're feeling inspired, why not try deep-space photography (opens in new tab) yourself, and check out the best telescopes (opens in new tab) for watching the night sky at home?