Snake nebula

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Snake nebula
Snake Nebula.jpg
Observational Data
Designation Barnard 72
Right ascension 17h 24m 03.51s
Declination -23° 38'
Constellation Ophiuchus
Type of object Dark nebula
Dimensions 0.5° across[1]
Distance from Earth 7,500 ly[1]

The Snake nebula (Barnard 72) is a dark nebula in the constellation of Ophiuchus.[1] Part of the larger Dark horse nebula, it was catalogued by Edward Emerson Barnard in the early 20th century as Barnard 72.[2] It consists of gas and dust that obscures the stars behind the nebula, producing a dark region on the night sky that appears devoid of stars. It's "S" like shape produces a similarity to a snake, giving the nebula its name.

The nebula is situated around 650 light years from Earth.[3] It appear 0.5° wide on the night sky (similar to that of a full moon) meaning it 5 light years across.[4] The dust in the nebula is mainly composed of carbon.[3] Several other objects classified by Barnard are located nearby, including: Barnard 68, Barnard 69, Barnard 70 and Barnard 74.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Snake in the Dark from
  2. The Snake nebula in Ophiuchus from
  3. 3.0 3.1 The Snake nebula from CFHT from
  4. Snake nebula from