This is Puppis A, the remnants of a violent supernova that exploded 3,700 years ago, glowing red as its shockwaves still heat up the dust around it. But Puppis A is really special because it hides the “Cosmic Cannonball.”
That’s how astronomers call the neutron star that moves inside it at a whooping 3 million miles per hour. NASA calls this an “absurd speed”, and says that they can’t explain why it moves so bloody fast. That’s why they nicknamed it the Cosmic Cannonball. They supposed the Cosmic Cannonball was formed by part of the exploding star matter, but they don’t know how in hell it’s swooshing at that speed.
Puppis A is also one of the brightest and largest objects on the sky in the X-ray spectrum. This image was taken by the four infrared detectors on board NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer. [NASA]