NASA gave the eerie scene the name “The Ghostly Cosmic Hand,” explaining that the image is the result of two space-based X-ray telescopes that merged hundreds of images to unveil the “bones” of a magnificent structure resembling a hand in space.
According to the Astrophysical Journal, the image reveals the behavior of a dead star living through columns of active and antimatter.
The Chandra X-ray Observatory, a NASA facility, first spotted the star known as the pulsar PSR B1509-58 in 2001, and the surprise was that the pulsar’s wind nebula resembles a human hand.
The pulsar itself is located at the “wrist” of the nebula, and NASA‘s latest X-ray telescope added finer details about the structure, revealing its cosmic bones.
NASA said in a statement: “About 1,500 years ago, the nuclear fuel of a giant star in our galaxy ran out and, when this happened, the star collapsed and formed an extremely dense body called a neutron star.”
Young pulsars can create jets of matter and antimatter moving away from the pulsar’s poles, along with powerful winds, forming the “pulsar wind nebula.