Colin MacDiarmid, associate scientist in the Department of Nutritional Sciences, was one of 10 UW-Madison faculty, staff and students to have been named winners of the 2017 Cool Science Image Contest. A panel of eight experienced artists and scientists judged the scientific content and aesthetic and creative qualities of 131 images and videos entered in the 7th annual competition.
MacDiarmid’s winning photo – a pair of nebulae in the sword of the constellation Orion – was shot through an 80mm telescope. In the photo, the Running Man Nebula (left) and Great Orion Nebula (also known as Messier 42, at right) can be found in the “sword” in the middle of the constellation Orion. Relatively young stars in Messier 42 pump out copious X-rays, causing gas nearby to glow blue-green and red. This region of the sky is the brightest of such emission nebulae, and often visible to the naked eye.
To see the other winning entrants, visit the UW-Madison news website.