University of Wisconsin

Space Astronomy Laboratory

ASTRO - 2

WUPPE

OBJECT: NGC 3132
Other Names: "Eight-Burst" Nebula
ID # 4109

UW Astronomer: Joni Johnson


NGC 3132 is a planetary nebula that can be found in the constellation of Vela. Its disk is elliptical, with a structure suggesting the appearance of several oval rings superimposed and tilted at different angles; thence the name "Eight-Burst" Nebula. This nebula is 2800 light years away, with a diameter of 0.5 light years. A study done in 1977 showed that the central star (HD 87892, 10th magnitude) is not truly the illuminating star of the nebula; the radiation instead is supplied by a 16th magnitude dwarf companion that has a surface temperature of 100,000 K.