This image is a stunning close-up of the Veil Nebula - the shattered remains of a supernova that exploded some 5-10,000 years ago. The image provides a beautiful view of the delicate, wispy structure resulting from this cosmic explosion. Also known as Cygnus Loop, the Veil Nebula is located in the constellation of Cygnus, the Swan, and is about 1,500 light-years away from Earth.
This small portion of the Veil Nebula is located in the larger segment seen in its western part (the top left corner of the large ground-based overview image). The entire structure spans about 3 degrees, corresponding to about 6 full moons.
The image was taken with Hubble's Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2). The colour is produced by composite of three different images. The different colours indicate emission from different kinds of atoms excited by the shock: blue shows oxygen, green shows sulphur, and red shows hydrogen.